An almost-there silver finish is proof that pencak silat runs strong in this family

Dec 3, 2019
PHOTO: Kate Reyes

ALMOST is never enough.

That’s the case for pencak silat ganda male Philippine bets, brothers Alfau Jan and Almohaidib Abad, whose total routine score tied with Malaysia at 564 points. Both countries were vying for gold on Monday at the Subic Bay Exhibition and Convention Center.

Pencak silat is composed of three categories, Tunggal (singles), Ganda (doubles), and Regu (team). Ganda performers present a choreographed three-minute routine consistig of different attack and defense combinations. The use of weapons is also allowed, but only one member can wield them at a time.

After a careful deliberation of the judges and the organizing committee, the Abad siblings had to settle for silver after the review found lapses in time. PH finished with 2:59, while Malaysia posted a perfect three-minute performance.

Nevertheless, for the brothers, silver is just as good as gold, especially when they're in the game together.

“Pag nagko-compete kami, para kaming naglalaro lang. May connection na kami kasi magkasama kami araw-araw eh,” said the 21-year-old Alfau Jan.

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Looking back on their performance, Almohaidib added, “Tulad ng sabi niya, para kaming naglalaro, pero dapat mas gandahan pa namin ‘yung mga galaw sa susunod na laro namin.”

Still, progress is still progress, as they compare yesterday's win with their sixth place finish in the 2017 Southeast Asian Games.

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“Sa totoo lang po, second time na naming mag-SEA Games," said the older Abad, "‘Nung last time po, pang-sixth lang kami, kami rin po yun [magkapatid], wala pa talagang mga skill ‘yung dati naming moves.”

They also mentioned that pencak silat has always been their sport growing up as their father, Abdul Karim Abad, is the coach of the national team artistics.

“’Yung tatay namin, head coach ng artistic, kaya since two years old, naglalaro na kami, sobrang interesado din talaga kami sa pencak,” he added.

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PHOTO: Kate Reyes
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