Introducing Xantheia Pennisi, the Filipino-Australian competing in the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series 2019 tour.
Pennisi’s long overdue homecoming to her parental heritage’s homeland is scheduled to be held on April 13 among the towering limestone formations and beautiful scenery of El Nido, Palawan, Philippines.
The 20-year-old cliff diver joins the 11th edition of the world series as a wildcard competitor. Pennisi debuted in 2018 in the same series as the first diver of Filipino descent to join the competition. She was also as a wildcard entry in the same series at the sixth stop in Mostar at Bosnua and Harzegovina.
The young athlete says she was inspired to compete in the upcoming Red Bull Cliff diving world series because of her Tarlac-native Filipino mother’s encouragement which she cherished and fueled her to compete in the international competition.
“Everything happens for a reason, and this stop happened for me,” says Pennisi in the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series report. “I will be diving for my family and my biggest supporter, my mum.”
She shares she is looking forward to return to the Philippines for this season’s only Asian stop.
“I haven’t been in the Philippines since 2012, and I cannot wait to be back!” says Pennisi. “I feel very special to be representing Australia and the Philippines. I know my family are supporting me, and I want to make them proud.”
For the newly-vegetarian cliff diver, the return to the Philippines is also a chance to enjoy some of her favorite things about the country.
“I love the exotic fruit, especially green mango – they are my favorite!” shares Pennisi. “I love the local markets and street food. The warm weather and all the incredible beaches are a great bonus, but seeing my family is my favorite part of the Philippines.”
Pennisi was raised in the Brisbane, Queensland, becoming interested in sports at the young age of 4, started high diving in her teenage days after meeting cliff diving champion Rhiannan Iffland, and quickly gained the attention of coaches because of her good performance.
WATCH Xantheia Pennisi compete against the world’s best cliff divers on April 13 at 4:40 PM local time and 8.45 AM GMT and will be broadcast live on the following platforms:
With reports from Marclee Agustin
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