The first Philippine Kickboxing Team members show their fighting stance as they prepare to compete next month in the Southeast Asian Games. (PNA photo)

The Philippines has formed its very first National Kickboxing Team for next month’s 30th South East Asian (SEAG) Games.

Led by 2014 World Cup of Wushu sanda champion Jean Claude Saclag, the team will have the chance at eight gold medals in weight categories ranging from kick light, full contact and low kick. 

Saclag, who won the world championship in the 60-kilogram division, changed sports early this year as he hopes to find a new challenge in combat sports in the men’s 63-kilogram division. 

Joining Saclag to represent the country are martial artists Karl Maguide (51 kg), Jomar Balagui (54 kg), Ruel Catalan (57 kg), Rex de Lara (63 kg), Jerry Olsim (69 kg), Renz Daquel (48 kg) and Gina Iniong (55 kg). 

The eight reserves are Danny Kingad, Rosemarie Recto, Xavier Villanueva, Daryle Wadasen, Carlos Alvarez, Emmanuel Cantores, Janica Alawas and Robin Catalan.

The team had been training in Taiwan and Cambodia with coaches Taekwondo Olympian Donnie Geisler, boxing coach Abellon Cabiara Mondol, and fight/striking coach Mark Sangiao.

The national contingent is currently in Baguio for their high-altitude training and final weight training prior to their return to Manila in time for the December 1 to 7 competition at the Cuneta Astrodome in Pasay City. (Jojo Mangahis)