SINGAPORE - Fencer Justine Tinio settled for the silver medal after bowing to Singapore’s Wang Wenying in the final of the women’s individual foil of the 28th Southeast Asian Games at the OCBC Arena on Wednesday.
Tinio fell behind early against the much-taller Wang, 6-1, and could not mount a fightback, ending the Philippine hopes of winning its first gold in this edition of the biennial showpiece.
The fencer out of University of the East later apologized for losing the gold medal match in an interview with Filipino sports scribes.
“Sorry hindi ko nakuha ‘yung gold. Thank you pa rin dahil kung hindi dahil sa inyo at kay God, hindi ko makukuha ‘to,” said Tinio.
The path to the finals was a tough one for the 19-year-old Tinio.
She finished the preliminaries as the eighth-seed player, yet the teener, competing in her first SEA Games stint, beat top-ranked Do Thi Anh of Vietnam in the quarterfinal round, 15-11.
Tinio, a gold medalist in last year's Philippine National Games, beat another Vietnamese in Nguyen Thi Hoai Thu, 15-6, in the semis on her way to the gold medal match.
But Tinio lost steam in the finals.
"Napagod din po ako. Hirap na po ako huminga pero ginawa ko lang po makakaya ko," she said.