MANILA, Philippines – Daniela Reggie Dela Pisa delivered the unexpected, a gold medal finish for the Philippines in the Hoop Individual event of the 30th Southeast Asian Games Rhythmic Gymnastics Competition at the historic Rizal Memorial Coliseum.
In her winning performance, Dela Pisa scored a total of 17.750 points that was the sum of the 11.400 for the Difficult criteria which include 4.000 points on the Body and 7.400 for the Apparatus and 6.350 points from the Execution department.
“I was so overwhelmed. I never expected to win the gold medal. I just want to do my best in front of the (Filipino) people. And I am proud to be representing Cebu City in this competition,” Dela Pisa said after she was awarded the gold medal.
The road to the Philippines’ first Rhythmic Gymnastics gold medal in SEA Games was very tough. Dela Pisa had to travel on her own to train in Hungary with her new mentor Hungarian Olympian Dora Vass who had polished the skills of the wonder kid from Hipodromo, Cebu City.
Dela Pisa was even in her lowest morale when she was left out when the Philippine Rhythmic Gymnastics team left to train at the Shinohara Academy in Atlanta, USA in October.
Instead of losing her focus. Dela Pisa regrouped and with the help of spouses Arnold and Laurice Labadan, she made her way to Hungary to train with Dora Vass and where she won the All-Around gold medal in the Liptov Cup 2019 in Liptovsky, Slovakia.
“Coach Dora said she is expecting Dadai to win three medals. No specific color just medal. She never expected her to win a gold medal. Dadai has improved a lot under coach Dora, and I am very proud of her. Not because that I am her mother but as her first coach and I know this day would come,” said the teary-eyed Darlene Dela Pisa.
Aside from the gold medal, Dela Pisa also won the bronze medals in the Ball and Clubs apparatus.
Meanwhile, Skateboarder Margielyn Didal bagged her second gold medal after ruling the Women’s Street Skateboard competition by defeating Christiana Nicole Means for the second time by a wide margin 12.7 to 7.3 points.
Also winning the gold medals for the Philippines were pole vaulter Ernest John Obiena, Kristina Marie Knott in the Women’s 200-M, Lester Troy Tayong and Emerson Villena in the International 470 competition in Sailing, Chezka Centeno topped the Women’s 10-Ball Pool competition in Billiard Sports, Jeordan Dominguez (Freestyle Poomsae competition in Taekwondo), Hannel Abella, Mickyle Rein Bustos, Anna Gabriela Estimada and Harlene Raguin (Team Epee in Fencing), Dustin Jacob Mella, Raphael Enrico Mella and Rodolfo Reyes Jr. (Taekwondo – Men’s Recognized Poomsae Team), Tsukii Junna (Karatedo – Women’s 50kgs Kumite).
Noelle Conchita Corazon Manalac (Soft Tennis – Women’s Individual Singles), Jocel Lyn Ninobla (Taekwondo – Women’s Individual Recognized Poomsae) while Rodolfo Reyes Jr.
The Philippines continued to occupy the top spot in the medal tally with 89 gold medals, 67 silvers and 65 bronzes. Indonesia still at the second place with 50-49-58 and Vietnam had 45-50-64 following by Thailand with 41-55-60 medals, Singapore comes in next with 37-30-41; Malaysia with 36-28-42; Myanmar 3-11-33, Cambodia 2-4-18, Brunei Darussalam 1-5-5, Lao PDR – 0-3-13 and after the 6th Day of competition, Timor Leste still has no medal to count. RCM