Kiyomi Watanabe may have a berth within reach of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, but does not take any risks.
23-year-old Watanabe was just coming out of a tournament in China when she won her fourth consecutive gold medal at the 30th Southeast Asian Games earlier this month.
David Carter, President of the Philippine Judo Federation, said Watanabe would continue to compete abroad to maintain her ranking and fitness.
"She didn't need to win, I explained before these competitions were all needed so that they could continue to collect points and maybe even improve their rankings," Carter told the Inquirer.
Watanabe currently ranks 27th in the world in its -63 kg category and could easily achieve the Olympic average.
"In terms of the country, she is 19. So if the Olympics fall now, we will definitely be there," added Carter, saying that other countries have multiple athletes in each category. The Olympic frontier is in July.
Watanabe carried out the three-gold attack of the Philippines in the biennial games. The other judo gold medalists were Nakano Shugen and Mariya Takahashi.
In the Philippines, two athletes have already qualified for Tokyo, pole vaulter Ernest John Obiena and gymnast Carlos Edriel Yulo.
Hidilyn Diaz of Weightlifting, Margielyn Didal of Skateboarding and the Filipino boxing team also strive to expand the list for Tokyo.
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