Jewel Napa braces for last chance to clinch Olympic berth

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, April 7) – Jewel Napa is the only remaining windsurfer from the Philippines with a chance to compete in the Tokyo Olympics after completing 12 races in the 2021 Mussanah Open Championship in Oman.

The 19-year-old lone Filipina sailor is currently in a tight battle with Singapore's Amanda Ng Ling Kai, who topped the two RS: X Women Class races on Wednesday.

With the twin victories, the Singaporean gains an edge against the Filipina, as Ling Kai widens her lead with a total of 15 points. Napa, who led the field after eight races, is now behind with 18 points and needs to make an outstanding performance in the medal race on Thursday.

"The Singaporean is really more experienced. She already read the weakness of Napa and continued to keep a guard on our bet during the race," Philippine windsurfing head coach Raul Lazo told CNN Philippines.

Ling Kai snatched the lead from Napa on Tuesday after finishing first in the tournament's ninth and tenth races.

In the RS:X Men Class, Filipino windsurfer Yancy Kaibigan still holds the second spot with 31 points while compatriot and two-time world champion Geylord Coveta is at third place with 53 points. Renz Amboy, the other Filipino sailor in the tournament, ranks fifth with 60 points.

The Filipino windsurfers no longer have the chance to compete in Tokyo as Thailand's Natthapong Phonoppharat virtually clinched the lone male division Olympic slot with 14 points.

Reneric Moreno and German Paz are the coaches guiding the four Filipino windsurfers in Oman. They are looking to follow the feat of Richard Paz, who competed in the 1988 and 1992 Olympic windsurfing competitions.