JAKARTA—After earning the country’s breakthrough gold medal in the 2018 Asian Games, weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz is confident that Filipino athletes will come through with more mints.
Diaz lifted a combined weight of 207 kilograms to top the podium in the women’s 53-kg division on Tuesday night. It was her first gold medal in the Asian Games, and it came two years after a star-making performance in the Rio Olympics wherein she won silver.
“Sa tingin ko, ito ‘yung simula ng gold medal sa atin,” the 27-year-old Diaz said afterward.
“Yes, naniniwala ako sa lahat ng mga Filipino athletes, na kayang-kaya natin ‘yan.
“Andito tayo to represent our country, at nag-training tayo, nag-prepare tayo. Reding-ready tayo na iuwi ang gold medal para sa Pilipinas.”
Before Diaz’s triumph, the Philippines had earned four bronze medals — three from taekwondo and one from wushu.
Team Philippines was unable to add to its haul on Wednesday, but there are more chances for them on Thursday with gymnast Carlos Yulo leading the charge.
The country last won multiple gold medals in the Asian Games in 2010, when Rey Saludar (boxing), Biboy Rivera (bowling) and Dennis Orcollo (billiards) triumphed for the Philippines.
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