University of Santo Tomas hopes to fend off a tough competition despite the graduation of its two standouts from its previous championship runs in the UAAP Season 81 poomsae tourmament on Tuesday at the Blue Eagle Gym.
Jocel Ninobla and Rodolfo Reyes Jr. capped their collegiate careers by helping the Growling Tigers bag a league-best third title last year.
Reyes later became a 2018 Asian Games bronze medalist in the men’s team event, along with Jeordan Dominguez and Dustin Mella.
The one-day event is set at 2 p.m.
De La Salle, the Season 79 titlist who is hoping to give former world champion Rinna Babanto a grand send off in her final year, and University of the Philippines, which is led by Janna Oliva, are UST’s main contenders in the throne.
Babanto and Oliva, together with Juvenile Faye Crisostomo, who also ended her collegiate stint by leading Far Eastern University to its first-ever podium finish last year, won the 2018 Asiad women’s team bronze.
Meanwhile, UST vies for a second consecutive juniors’ taekwondo championship in the day-long event scheduled at 9 a.m. Tuesday.
The three-day taekwondo tournament in the men’s and women’s division will start at 9 a.m. Wednesday at the same Katipunan venue.
National University is gunning for a championship double for the second straight season. The Lady Bulldogs won a second consecutive women’s title, while their men’s team finally reached the top last year.
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