Muay thai world champion Delarmino wins SEAG gold anew after successful protest

Phillip Delarmino is still the muay thai king in the Southeast Asian Games.

Two-time Southeast Asian Games gold medalist and muay thai world champion Phillip Delarmino (Photo from Pearl Managuelod's Facebook account)

Delarmino successfully defended his crown in the men's 57kg category in the 31st SEA Games against home bet Nguyen Doan Long at the Vinh Phuc Gymnasium.

Delarmino, who is also the 2021 World Champion, was initially awarded the silver medal after a 2-1 decision loss.

But an appeal by the Muaythai Association of the Philippines (MAP) led by Secretary-General Pearl Managuelod was acknowledged and eventually handed the win to Delarmino, thus making him still the reigning gold medalist in the regional biennial meet.

MAP, through a Facebook post, also confirmed the development with a video showing Delarmino's awarding and the raising of the Philippine flag.

"Not on our watch, Vietnam. Not on our watch," wrote Managuelod on her Facebook account. "Para sa bayan. Para sa atletang Pilipino."

Delarmino and Nguyen figured in a rematch but it was the Filipino warrior who had the last laugh after taking the mint for the Philippines.

Before bagging back-to-back golds, Delarmino, nicknamed "El Kapitan," only reached the quarterfinal in 2017 in Malaysia and settled for silver in the 2013 edition in Myanmar.

This was the second successful protest of the MAP as the duo of Islay Erika Bomogao and Rhichein Yosorez also captured gold in an all-female waikru mai muay event last May 17.

The national muay thai team ended its SEAG campaign with two golds and five bronzes in Rudzma Abubakar (women's 48kg), April Joy La Madrid (women's 60kg), Ariel Lee Lampacan (men's 54kg), Fritz Aldin Biagtan (men's 60 kg), and Mauro Lumba (men's 81 kg).