MANILA, Philippines -- (UPDATE) Jamie Lim capped off a sensational year by winning a gold medal in the 30th Southeast Asian Games, Monday at the World Trade Center.
Lim defeated Indonesia's Ceyco Zefanya, 2-1, in the finals of the women's +61kg kumite in karate to secure another gold medal for the Philippines.
It is the second gold for the Philippine karate team, after Junna Tsukii's triumph in the women's -50kg kumite earlier this week.
Lim defeated Malaysia's Audrey Japyus, 7-2, in the quarterfinal, then downed Vietnam's Thao Thi Bui, 5-1, in the semis to set up a gold medal match with Zefanya.
The achievement was made more special as Lim had stopped competing for four years to focus on her academics. Last June, Lim graduated as summa cum laude and valedictorian of the University of the Philippines College of Science after finishing her degree in Mathematics.
"Sobrang against the odds po, because 'yung mga kalaban ko, full-time athletes po sila. Nag-full time lang ako like five months ago," said Lim, who credited their head coach Okay Arpa for her rapid improvement.
"Karate has always been in my heart po, and 2019 SEA Games in the Philippines, how special is that, 'di ba?" she added.
"And the timing is perfect, I just graduated, I got my goal sa academics, and I think the signs just told me to. It's calling me, it's calling me to come back. So I just went for it, bahala na, just give it your all. It paid off."
With her gold, Lim matched the achievement of her father, Samboy Lim, who won a basketball gold in the 1985 SEA Games. While "The Skywalker" was not around to watch her, Lim's mother Atty. Darlene Berberabe witnessed her triumph.
"Summa cum laude for mom, SEA Games gold is for dad," beamed Lim. "To even come close to him (Samboy), to be compared to him and mom, it's so big for me. Today is so special for me."
Meanwhile, the Philippine men's team also reached the podium, winning bronze in men's kata after beating Myanmar, 23.74 to 23.14.
The Philippine karate team produced two gold medals, a silver, and seven bronzes in the SEA Games.
For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website.