JESSA ALQUINO is probably the best Filipina freestyle footballer.
EIGHTEEN-year-old Jessa Alquino is just an ordinary student at the Fatima National High School in General Santos City. But the Grade 10 student has an extraordinary talent.
She is so far the only Filipina freestyle footballer that I have ever seen.
In fact, she is so good that she has earned an invite to participate in the American Panna Freestyle competition in Mexico City on Dec. 14-15.
However, she has no confidence yet and turned down the invitation. “I have not joined a single contest yet. Maybe next year if I can get a sponsor to join any competition abroad,’’ she said.
As of the moment, she indulges herself in perfecting her skills. Her busy school schedule has kept her away from joining any football or futsal teams but she indulges herself in at least three hours of practice a day at home to perfect her freestyle skills.
Her daily training has already paid off as she has been noticed through her Youtube posts.
She looks like a ballet dancer or a gymnast with a football when she performs her freestyle football tricks. She is probably the best or the only Filipina freestyler.
She laments though that Freestyle Football is very popular abroad but there are no competitions here in the Philippines.
If there are competitions here, hands down she will win the women’s division title easily.
Ironically, Jessa got hooked in Freestyle Football only in December last year, when she saw one of the few Freestyle events in the country, the 4th Asian Freestyle Football Championship in a mall in Davao City.
There was no women’s category but a Filipino, Philip Waren Gertsson bested 30 other competitors from 12 other countries to win the title. Gerstsson is the 7th ranked Freestyler in the world today.
That event, burned the passion for freestyle football in her heart that later on inspired her to train everyday and improved her skills. In less than a year, look at her here. https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=30&v=_nmivHVrXvg. Isn’t she impressive?
Freestyle football is a new sport which is ruled by the Freestyle Football Federation under its acting president Daniel Wood of the United Kingdom. The association was organized only in 2011. Former Brazilian football superstar Ronaldinho is the ambassador of the sport.
Freestyle football has five disciplines in a contest to show to the judges. They are the Lower Body moves, the Upper Body moves, Sitting Down, Ground Moves, and the Special or Acrobatic Moves.
There are also popular moves that the players usually show off to impress the judges. They are the Around the World, Crossover, Toe Bounce, Hop the World, the Touzani Around the World, Mitchy Around the World, Alternative Mitchy Around the World, Palle Around the World, Lemmens Around the World, Stall, No Touch and the Combos.
Jessa admits that she does not have any coach and learns her skills by imitating the masters in Youtube. She also wishes that someday there would be a regular competition for the sport so that she could also show off her skills in front of live audiences not just online. (firstname.lastname@example.org)