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Pinoy cagers suffer third defeat in Para Games

MARK Vincent Aguilar tries to score a basket off Thai Atin Singdon in their wheelchair basketball match in the 4th Hangzhou Asian Para Games at the Hangzou Olympic Center Gymnasium yesterday. The Thais won 70-42. | Photograph courtesy of POC-PSC Media Group

HANGZHOU — Thailand held the Philippines to a measly basket in the second quarter on the way to a 70-32 romp Saturday in the 4th Hangzhou Asian Para Games wheelchair basketball tournament at the Hangzhou Olympic Center Gymnasium here.

After the Warriors gamely battled the Thais to a 16-all deadlock in the first quarter, their rivals erupted with a critical 16-0 blast in surging ahead 32-16 before Alfie Cabañog broke the long dry spell with a short jumper with a 1:07 to go in the first half.

From a 34-16 bulge, the Thais, perennial men’s wheelchair ASEAN Para Games champions, continued to pour it on and stretched the lead to 45-24 entering the pivotal final period where they continued their relentless offense on the way to their second win in three outings in Group A.

The Pilipinas Warriors absorbed their third straight loss and will face defending Iran, which routed China 72-42 in the other group match, in rolling to its third straight win.

In boccia competitions, Daniella Catacutan lost her first elimination match in BC1 Pool B of the individual female Boccia event, bowing to Phromsiri Satanan of Thailand, 0-8, at the Hangzhou Gymnasium.

Ahead by just one point after the first end, Phromsiri surged to a 6-0 lead following a near-perfect roll in the second end on the way to the lopsided win.

Meanwhile, para chess player Darry Bernardo and swimmer Angel Mae Otom were picked as the country’s flag-bearers at the opening ceremony at the Hangzhou Olympic Stadium here on Sunday.

Bernardo and Otom were among the standouts of the national team with six and four golds, respectively, in the last 11th Cambodia ASEAN Para Games.

They will head of Philippine contingent of 46 athletes and officials during the colorful inaugural rites starting at 7:30 p.m. at the sprawling 80,000-seat arena.

The Filipino para campaigners are aiming to surpass the country’s tally of 10 golds, eight silvers and 11 bronzes during the 2018 edition of the continental sports showcase held in Jakarta, Indonesia.

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