Not even an appendectomy can stop Igorot warrior Carlo Von Buminaang from capturing silver medal in the 31st Southeast Asian Games in Hanoi, Vietnam.
Buminaang is just one of the six-man team who competed in the regional biennial meet’s vovinam, a traditional martial art from the host country itself Vietnam.
Facing all odds, the Team Lakay stalwart edged home bet Do Xuan Hieu, 11-10, in the semifinal of the men’s 65kg category on Friday, May 20.
Though he ended up with silver after absorbing a 7-2 loss against Cambodia’s Virekkaamchhitphoutoung Eh, Buminaang showed proof that Filipinos can excel in any form of martial arts.
A Facebook post by Team Lakay Saturday, May 21 revealed that Buminaang’s road to the SEA Games wasn’t a walk in the park.
The Team Lakay fighter underwent an appendectomy last March 7 with one month recovery period before his training resumed exactly April 7.
With the operation, one full month was sliced from Buminaang’s training schedule.
Aside from that, the 28-year-old Buminaang found himself in unfamiliar territory, literally and figuratively, as this would be the first time that he will be travelling outside the country.
In his bout against Do, it was later revealed that he suffered an injury.
“From the bottom of my heart I want to thank you all, sa lahat ng mga supporters at walang sawang sumusuporta sa mga athetang Pinoy, again maraming maraming salamat,” said Buminaang in the post.
“Ang mga natutunan ko ngayong buong taon, ano man ang hamon na ating hinaharap sa araw-araw, ano mang hirap yan lagi nating ipagkatiwala sa Maykapal at harapin nang buong tapang. Dahil tayong mga Pilipino ay likas na palaban at ‘yon ang ginawa ko sa aking laban dito sa aking laro sa Vovinam at hindi man nakuha ang inaasam na ginto, meron parin tayong nauwing silver medal para sa bayan.”
This was the first time the Philippines has sent a delegation to vovinam, including Buminaang, Jenelyn Olsim, Danny Kingad, Renato Cha Jr., Zephania Ngaya, and Gina Iniong-Araos, in the SEA Games since its debut in 2011.
Vovinam resumed in 2013 and returned nine years later with host Vietnam taking over.
Aside from Buminaang, Team Lakay’s Jenelyn Olsim also delivered bronze medal in the women’s -55kg event.