August 27, 2018 at 08:50 pm
Riera U. Mallari
Jakarta—From beauty pageants to an Asian Games bronze medal, pretty Cherry May Regalado has indeed come a long way.
The 23-year-old Nutrition Course graduate at the Aklan State University in Banga, Aklan turned her 2017 Southeast Asian Games frustration into a bronze in the 18th Asian Games as she finished third in the Women’s Seri Singles Finals of the Pencak Silat competition Monday at the Padepokan Pencak Silat TM III here.
“Hindi ko napigilan ang pag-iyak noong SEA Games kasi po alam ko na magkakamedal ako,” said Regalado, who placed fourth in the KL games. “Hindi po ako nag-give up at sinabi ko po sa sarili ko na patutunayan ko sa kanila na nagkamali sila ng judging.”
Regalado, who was coming off a gold medal feat at the 2018 Asian Games Invitation Tournament in Indonesia prior to these games, made true her promise as she delivered the country’s 11th bronze medal, becoming the first female medallist for pencak silat.
Her achievement was the third bronze medal for Philippines in the sport, counting the third-place finishes of Dines Dumaan and Jefferson Rhey Loon on Sunday.
Regalado’s feat, coupled with Junna Tsukii’s bronze medal later in the day after she crushed Thailand’s Paweena Raksachart in the 50kg karate competitions, raised the Philippines’ total gold-silver-bronze medal haul to 3-0-12, good for 16th spot overall.
“Hindi ko man po nakamit yung inaasam ko na gold medal, alam ko po sa sarili ko na binigay ko ‘yung makakaya ko para sa bayan natin. Kung hindi man into naging sapat para sa ngayon, alam ko po na marami pang pagkakataon na ibibgay sakin. Tiwala lang po sa sarili at sa Diyos,” said Regalado, who used to join and win beauty contests in high school.
Regalado scored 444 points, just a point shy from silver medal won by Singapore’s Nurzuhairah Mohammad Yazid.
Indonesia’s Puspa Arumsasi won the gold with a total of 467 points.
“Masaya po ako, dahil alam ko po na ibinigay ko po ang best ko at may magandang plano para sakin. Gusto ko pong pasalamatan ang lahat, lalo na ang Panginoon, pamilya ko, buong Pilipinas na nakasuporta at nakaabang sa akin, sa NSA ko po PhilSilat Association at sa mga taong hindi nagdalawang isip na tulungan kami,” said Regalado, who tried out in athletics and volleyball before finally deciding to train in martial arts prior to college.