THE PHILIPPINES women trios of Liza Del Rosario, Cecilia Yap and Liza Clutario, made an amazing comeback to win their country's first gold in 20 years and became the first Asian country to strike a medal in the World Championships at the Pyramid Mega Lanes here in Bandar Sunway yesterday.
And they did it in style, setting a new championships record with their combined score of 3,797 pinfalls.
They beat the previous mark of 3,782 set by South Korea at the previous world meet in Abu Dhabi four years ago.
Just two days after declaring that the bowling fraternity have not seen the best from the Philippines team, the 25-year-old Liza said: “This is unbelievable. We knew we had a chance for a medal if we stayed focused. And that's what we did. This is certainly great.”
“We are glad to be the first Asian team to win a medal here. There will be big celebration for us back at home. All of us bowled really great today and we look forward of doing well in the team tomorrow.”
All however, had looked lost for the Philippines when they were trailing at 17th position after the first block of three games on Monday.
But yesterday, the trios were in fiery form, blazing the lanes with high scores to end their gold medal drought, which was last won by Bong Coo in the All-Events at the world meet in Caracas, Venezuela in 1983.
The Philippines however had to wait anxiously before they were declared the champions.
The hot England team, who looked good to win their third gold of the championships after taking a comfortable lead on Monday, suffered hiccups and lost the chance for a gold by a mere 16 pins.
The trios of Zara Glover, Kirsten Penny and Lisa John had to settle for silver with a score of 3,781 pins.
Said the English's performance director Chris Buck: “It was disappointing to miss a chance to win our third gold medal but we cannot be too greedy. There were problems with sparing but we will bounce back in the team event.”
Diandra Hyman was in awesome form but it was only good enough to help the American team win a bronze medal. Together with Annita Manns and Lucy Sandelin, the team managed 3,769 pins.
Malaysia's misery in the world meet continued when the trio of Shalin Zulkilfi, Wendy Chai and Choy Poh Lai managed to drop only 3,479 pins for 15th place. Sarah Yap, Sharon Chai and Lai Kin Ngoh came in 19th with a score of 3,438 pins.