The Philippines has officially received their first ever gold medalist in the 2018 Asian Para Games on opening day of the tournament in Indonesia by swimmer Ernie Gawilan on Sunday, October 7. The event happened at the Gelora Bung Karno Aquatic Stadium in Jakarta.

The 27-year-old from Davao received first in the SM7 category with a time of two minutes and 52.43 seconds for the 200M Individual Medley. He was followed by Liang-Da from Chinese Taipei, who took silver, and Jadhav Suyash Narayan from India, who took bronze. With Gawilan’s gold in 200M, he also received a silver in the men’s 50M freestyle with a time of 31.93 seconds.

Gawilan was born with underdeveloped extremities, resulting in a lack of both legs and an underdeveloped left limb. (ending for filming) He previously set the record for Olympic Qualifying time at the ASEAN Para Games in Singapore back in 2015. He also competed in the 2016 Summer Paralympics that was held in Rio de Janeiro, where he participated in 400M freestyle, 100M freestyle, and 100M backstroke.

Other than Gawilan’s achievements, Team Philippines received three more medals during the opening day of the games. Gary Bejino, also a swimmer, won bronze in men’s 100M backstroke S6, while powerlifter Achelle Guion won silver in the women’s -45kg. Arthus Bucay won bronze in Para Cycling Men’s Time Trial during the second day, while Kim Ian Chi was awarded the second gold for the Philippines in Mixed Singles TP B10 bowling. The Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) also announced their excitement in watching para powerlifter Adeline Dumapong-Ancheta and para table tennis player Josephine Medina perform in the tournament. With a total of six medals, the Philippines is currently in eighth place while China leads first with 31 medals overall.


Date: October 11, 2018 | By: Gianna Llanes | Newspaper: Inquirer | Source: http://www.canadianinquirer.net/2018/10/08/swimmer-ernie-gawilan-wins-historic-gold-ph-asian-para-games/