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When the Philippines showed its best as SEA Games hosts in 1981, 1991 and 2005

Hosting the biennial Southeast Asian Games, just like any international multi-sport competition, offers an opportunity for a country to flaunt its best—in terms of organizing the event, making the tournament stand-out, and unleash a vaunted athletic campaign against the region’s best. Before this year’s SEA Games, the Philippines has hosted the SEA Games three times—all of which were momentous and ground-breaking. And in each successive staging, the Filipinos went up the medal standings, reaching the top in the country’s most successful showing in international sports when the country last hosted the biennial event 14 years ago. 1981 This was the first time the Philippines took the cudgels in hosting the Games. Already in its 11th staging, the SEA Games became a centerpiece event of President Ferdinand Marcos’s presidency, as it highlighted his administration’s heightened focus on sports development. This was through the initiative of Marcos nephew Michael Keon’s Gintong Alay program.  The Games was known as the launching pad of Asia’s sprint queen Lydia de Vega, who marveled everyone with her speed and track prowess that earned her the Gold in record-breaking performances in the 100, 200, and women’s relay teams. Isidro del Prado was another track phenom, ruling the 400 meters also in record fashion. The Games was the breakthrough year in Philippine sports as it produced a bountiful harvest in Golds from track and field, cycling, bowling, boxing, basketball, swimming, and weightlifting, among others. The Philippines ended at third, its highest place at the time, with 55 golds, 55 silvers, and 77 bronze medals for a total 187 medals. 1991 Ten years after its impressive first-ever SEA Games hosting, a new government and political climate enveloped the biennial meet. Under President Corazon Aquino, the 16th SEA Games showed the remarkable change the country attained since the 1986 EDSA Revolution, which would be emphasized with an astonishing medal performance, almost topping the 16th edition if not for Indonesia’s marathon gold.  Swimming took the spotlight with ace tanker Eric Buhain capturing a record six golds, making him the most bemedalled athlete, and Akiko Thompson becoming the crowd darling, donning two golds. Bea Lucero also achieved a first-ever milestone of being the only athlete to win medals in two sporting events—two golds in gymnastics in 1987 Jakarta and a gold in the bantamweight division of women’s taekwondo in the 1991 Manila games. A 27 year-old Lydia de Vega-Mercado reclaimed the Asian sprint queen title by winning the Gold in the 100 meters over compatriot Elma Muros and Malaysian Goldivasamy Shanti. Muros, however, won the 100 meter hurdles and won the long jump gold for four successive stagings—a SEA Games first.  The Philippines would rule several sport events with a gold rush in swimming, boxing, basketball, shooting, wushu, track and field, taekwondo, bowling, billiards, among others. Its 91 Gold, 62 Silver, 84 Bronze, and 237 total medal count was good for second. 2005 It took fourteen years before Manila hosted the SEA Games again. And in 2005, its rise as the regional powerhouse in sports was completed with the contingent under the administration of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo reaching the top of the medal standings.  The 23rd  staging was unprecedented, starting with the Opening Ceremonies being held at the Quirino Grandstand instead of a sports stadium, drawing an immense live audience—estimated as the largest ever for a sports event at 200,000. It was the grandest, having the widest array of sports legends appearing in the grand parade of colors, such as SEA Games legends Lydia de Vega-Mercado and Akiko Thompson, Olympic silver medalist Onyok Velasco, top basketball player Allan Caidic, and champion equestrienne Mikee Cojuangco-Jaworski. When the Philippine delegates arrived, they were accompanied by Miss International 2005 Precious Lara Quigaman, actress Angel Locsin, and then World Boxing Council Lightweight Champion Manny Pacquiao.  Best of all, the Philippines erased the stigma of being the “sick man” of Asian sports, as it won golds left and right, even in sport events it was not usually dominant. Diver Sheila Mae Perez, swimmer Miguel Molina, rower Benjamin Tolentino Jr., and billiards ace Alex Pagulayan were the winningest Filipino athletes with three golds each. Wushu had the most golds with 11, followed by track and field, aquatics, boxing, billiards and snooker, taekwondo, traditional boat race, fencing, wrestling, bowling, judo, and archery. In addition, the Philippines won golds in arnis, karatedo, muay, rowing, shooting, lawn tennis, cycling, dance sports, golf, gymnastics, softball, baseball, lawn balls, equestrian, and pencak silat.  In total, the Philippines won the overall championship with an astonishing 113 gold, 84 silver, 94 bronze, and 291 total medal haul—its best ever in international competitions. Will the Philippines match or eclipse its historic achievement 14 years ago and continue its rise in the medal tally when it hosts the biennial event? Catch the 30th SEA Games in various locations in the Philippines from Saturday, November 30 until Wednesday, December 11 on ABS-CBN S+A, ABS-CBN S+A HD, Liga, Liga HD, iWant Sports, and sports.abs-cbn.com. .....»»

Category: sportsSource: abscbn abscbnNov 30th, 2019

That other life as a sportswriter

Must be happenstance that the Southeast Asian Games are being held in Manila late in the year, as it has been in the past every 14 years or so in 2005 and, before that, 1991. In 1981 the games were also held here, serving as prelude to Diay de Vega’s ruling the 100 and 200 meters in the Asian Games the following year......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsDec 8th, 2019

Surfer yields shot at gold to save life

The Philippines is raking in the gold medals in almost all fronts and on its way to eclipsing its previous hauls of 91 in 1991 and 112 in 2005 in the country’s previous hosting of the Southeast Asian Games......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsDec 7th, 2019

SEA Games: Philippines advances to men’s volleyball semis

A very confident Philippine team showed up at the PhilSports Arena in Pasig City on Wednesday as the home bets crushed Vietnam, 25-20, 25-21, 25-12, to book a semifinals ticket in the 30th Southeast Asian Games men's volleyball competition. Smelling blood after taking the first two sets with ease, the Filipinos made a coup de grace in the third as they opened a gaping 12-point advantage on their way to their second straight win in Pool B. The PHI has yet to drop a set in the competition after sweeping Cambodia in their opener on Monday. With the crowd electrified by the Nationals power plays and solid net defense, the Nationals denied the 2017 editions bronze medalist a chance for a podium finish while giving themselves an opportunity to end a 28-year medal drought. “Sobrang saya kasi alam ko ito ‘yung muling nakapasok ‘yung Pilipinas sa Final Four kasi (last medal) pa natin is 1991,” said PHI head coach Dante Alinsunurin. “Sobrang tuwa na na-achieve namin ngayon na makapasok sa Final Four.” Bryan Bagunas bannered the Nationals with 22 points off 17 kills, three aces and two kill blocks while Marck Espejo displayed crisp spiking with 11 kills off 22 attempts to finish with 13 markers.    Skipper John Vic De Guzman, Kim Malabunga and Francis Saura got seven points each while setter Joshua Retamar tallied 17 excellent sets and had four points including three of the Philippines' 11 kill blocks in the match that lasted for only an hour and 24 minutes. De Guzman's ace in the third gave the Philippines a comfortable, 21-9, lead before cruising to morale-boosting conquest.   The PHI joined reigning silver medalist and also unbeaten in two games Indonesia, which the Nationals will face on Friday to close the group stage, in the Final Four. Only Thanh Thuan Tu reached double-digit scoring for the Vietnamese with 15 points -all from attacks - while Quang Khanh Le got seven markers. Vietnam absorbed its second defeat in as many games. Meanwhile, Indonesia beat Cambodia, 25-20, 25-17, 35-33, in the other Pool B match while Myanmar debuted with a 26-25, 25-21, 25-18, victory over Singapore in Pool A to join defending champion Thailand on top of their group.    --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 4th, 2019

U-22 Azkals in must-win match against Malaysia in 2019 SEA Games Men s Football

The Philippine Under-22 Men's Football National Team find themselves in a must-win match against Malaysia in the 2019 Southeast Asian Games Men's Football Tournament, Friday evening at the Rizal Memorial Football Coliseum in Manila.  The U-22 Azkals are coming off a heartbreaking 1-2 loss to Myanmar, Wednesday, and are in dire need of a 3-point result of they wish to make it out of Group A and advance into the semifinals.  Currently, the Azkals sit at one draw and one loss for four points, just one win away from top-seeded Cambodia and Myanmar.  Malaysia, meanwhile, is coming off a 1-1 draw against Cambodia on opening day.  This will be the first time that the Philippines and Malaysia cross paths in the SEA Games since the Philippines last hosted the biennial sporting showcase back in 2005. Malaysia defeated the hosts, 4-2, at the Panaad Park and Stadium in Bacolod.  In the 4:00 PM Group A matchup, Myanmar faces Timor Leste.  Catch the action LIVE on ABS-CBN S+A channel 23, iWant and via livestream!    .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 28th, 2019

Lesson from 2005 games: PSC to handle 2019 SEAG funds

MANILA, Philippines - When the country hosts the Southeast Asian Games in 2019, the Philippine Sports Commission will make sure that every peso, every centav.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsDec 12th, 2016

NCAA Season 95: Lady Altas score back-to-back wins

It wasn’t a pretty win but University of Perpetual Help head coach Macky Carino felt that his squad showed guts in carving out a 25-27, 25-23, 26-24, 14-25, 17-15, victory over Lyceum of the Philippines University for their second straight win in the NCAA Season 95 women’s volleyball competition on Tuesday at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. Down big in a fourth set meltdown, the Lady Altas displayed nerves of steel in the frantic race to the finish in the deciding frame to improve to 2-1 win-loss record.      Jhona Rosal led Perpetual with 20 points anchored on 17 kills including the game-clinching hit while adding 16 excellent receptions and 10 digs. Bianca Tripoli had 19 markers while setter Jenny Gaviola got 10 points and dished out 13 excellent sets for the Lady Altas.   Carino admitted that the Lady Pirates seemed to be their perennial problem in the elimination round. Taking down LPU has never been easy for the Las Pinas-based squad in the past couple of seasons. “Last year din, five sets din kami niyan,” recalled Carino. "So parang, actually third game din namin 'yan against them, five sets din kami. So ngayon, at least ngayon, kahit papaano lumusot kami.” The Lady Altas went down as much as 12 points in the fourth and had to save a match point in the fifth after wasting an 11-9 lead.   “Pangit ng performance ng team ko ngayon, iba pa rin 'yung hindi sanay sa laruan, kulang sa experience,” said Carino, whose squad survived an error-filled outing after giving away 40 points off miscues. “Although majority naman ng nasa lineup ko, doon sa first six ko, naka-experience ng championship. Pero hindi pa rin sapat eh.” The Lady Altas saw their lead in the fifth evaporate and even went down, 14-13, after Shyra Umandal sent her serve wide. Tripoli broke the block in the next play before Hannah Suico gave Perpetual the match point advantage, 15-14. Tripoli sent her serve short for a 15-15 tie but a costly attack error by LPU’s Jacq Acuna off an overreceive by the Lady Altas set up Rosal’s game winner. The Lady Pirates suffered their third loss in as many games despite the efforts of Ciamelle Wanta, Alexandra Rafael and Mary Joy Onofre, who all scored 15 points each. Acuna finished with 15 while Monica Sevilla got 10 for LPU. Meanwhile, the two-time defending champion Altas made short work of the Pirates, 25-22, 33-31, 25-20, for a 3-0 record for the solo top spot in the men's division. Louie Ramirez exploded for 23 points with 22 coming off attacks while Ronniel Rosales had 15 for Perpetual, which won their 14th straight game overall since Season 93. LPU remained winless in three games. In juniors play, five-time defending champion Junior Altas improved to 3-0 after beating the Junior Pirates, 25-17, 25-17, 25-15.              --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 21st, 2020

Ginebra breaks Meralco heart anew, bags Govs Cup crown

MANILA, Philippines – Same finals foe, same result.  Barangay Ginebra reasserted its mastery over Meralco to capture the 2019-20 PBA Governors' Cup crown in 5 games with a come-from-behind 105-93 win at the Mall of Asia Arena on Friday, January 17.  Import Justin Brownlee once again showed the way with 24 ........»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsJan 17th, 2020

After SEA Games, Philippine hosts Asian badminton

The best shuttlers in the region will converge in the Philippines next month for the 2020 Badminton Asia Team Championships......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsJan 11th, 2020

Encarnacion, White Sox complete $12 million, 1-year contract

By Andrew Seligman, Associated Press CHICAGO (AP) — Edwin Encarnación saw the young players the Chicago White Sox have and a bright future for a team eyeing a run at the AL Central championship after seven straight losing seasons. That's why he chose to be a part of it. Encarnación and the White Sox finalized a $12 million, one-year contract on Thursday, putting him in position to become Chicago's designated hitter and a part-time first baseman along with José Abreu. Encarnación is due $12 million this season, and the White Sox hold a $12 million option for 2021 under the deal, which was agreed to Dec. 25 subject to a successful physical. “I'm very excited to be part of this team, I think this team has a great future," he said. "To be here and try to help this team to go where we want to go and make the playoffs.” Encarnación hit 34 home runs in 109 games for Seattle and the Yankees last year. The three-time All-Star led the American League with 21 homers when the Mariners dealt him to New York in June. The Yankees declined a $25 million option for next season, opting to pay a $5 million buyout. He hit .249 with 13 homers and 37 RBIs in 44 regular-season games with the Yankees, limited by oblique problems. He batted .308 while New York beat Minnesota in the AL Division Series, but was 1 for 18 with 11 strikeouts in the AL Championship Series against Houston. Encarnación, who turned 37 on Tuesday, has eight straight seasons with more than 30 homers. He has 414 homers in 15 years with Cincinnati, Toronto, Cleveland, Seattle and New York. Last year he became the first major leaguer to play on three continents in one season, opening the season in Tokyo with the Mariners and going to London in June with the Yankees. “Edwin is a professional hitter, someone who makes each and every at-bat count,” general Rick Hahn said in a statement. “His long track record of power is impressive and as a veteran run producer, Edwin adds another threatening bat to our lineup, lengthening our batting order and increasing (manager) Rick Renteria’s offensive options on any given night.” The White Sox have been one of baseball's busiest teams, adding to a promising young core. Chicago also added catcher Yasmani Grandal and pitchers Dallas Keuchel, Gio González and Steve Cishek in free-agent deals. Outfielder Nomar Mazara was acquired in a trade with the Texas Rangers. Abreu, who led the AL with 123 RBIs last season, was re-signed to a $50 million, three-year deal, and top prospect Luis Robert agreed to a $50 million, six-year contract last week, clearing the way for the outfielder to begin the season in the majors. The White Sox were 72-89 last season, well behind the 101-win Minnesota Twins and 93-win Cleveland Indians. But with experienced veterans added to a promising young core, they believe they are in position to make a big jump after missing the playoffs for the 13th time in 14 years since their 2005 World Series championship. Encarnación and Grandal have five straight trips to the postseason. Keuchel, the 2015 AL Cy Young Award winner with Houston, made the playoffs four times in the past five years and won a World Series championship with the Astros in 2017. “That's obviously a tremendous track record for each of them, but also speaks in part to what we're trying to accomplish not just on the field but in terms of taking that next step in our clubhouse, and this young core not only growing together but learning how to win and learning what it takes to be successful not only over the course of the summer but well into October as well,” general manager Rick Hahn said. “Edwin's another piece in trying to accomplish that.” The veterans the White Sox added are joining a team that has reigning batting champion Tim Anderson, who led the majors with a .335 average. Yoán Moncada had a breakthrough season, hitting .315 with 25 homers and 79 RBIs. Eloy Jiménez showed pop as a rookie, with a .267 average, 31 homers and 79 RBIs. Prized outfielder Luis Robert figures to debut next spring, and top prospect Nick Madrigal might also be ready to get significant time at second base. Keuchel and Gonzalez will join a rotation led by All-Star Lucas Giolito that also includes Reynaldo Lopez and Dylan Cease. Promising young right-hander Michael Kopech is also expected to return following Tommy John surgery. Encarnación said he is “very close” with Jiménez and has been following him since Jiménez was 14. He called Jiménez “a great hitter” and praised the other big, young bats in the White Sox's lineup. “They're very smart hitters,” Encarnación said. “They have a great idea (of) what they are doing at the plate.” The White Sox designated left-hander Kodi Medeiros for assignment......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 10th, 2020

20 for 20: Pinoy Sports Personalities to Watch in 2020

As we enter a new decade, ABS-CBN Sports takes a look at 20 Pinoy sports personalities destined to shine in 2020.    Kiefer Ravena After an 18-month wait, Kiefer Ravena is finally back in basketball. Despite only playing in the PBA’s third conference, his impact was immediate, leading NLEX to the number 1 seed in the Governors’ Cup. The Road Warriors didn’t advance sure, but if Kiefer can impact a team that way in limited time, wait until you see what he can do with a full offseason.   Alex Eala At just 14 years old, Filipina tennister Alex Eala is already turning heads, and she’s yet to turn pro. With a runner-up finish at the ITF Mayor’s Cup in Osaka, Japan and her first ITF Juniors title in Cape Town, South Africa, Alex has had quite the fruitful year, leading to a career-best 11th-place ranking in the ITF Juniors table to finish the year.  Heading into 2020, Eala now has her sights set on turning pro as she plans to join more professional tournaments to raise her ranking even more. Expect the young tennis star to make even more headlines in the coming year.     Bryan Bagunas A vital cog in the national team’s silver medal finish in the 30th Southeast Asian Games, Bagunas is considered as one of the best Filipino volleyball players in this generation. Eyes will be on his blossoming international career playing as an import in the Japan V. Premier League.         Margielyn Didal While already a household name in Philippine skateboarding due to her success in the 2018 Asian Games in Jakarta, Margielyn Didal made even more waves in 2019. The 20-year old Cebuana reached the semifinals of the 2019 SLS World Championships in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and captured gold in the 2019 National Championships and the 2019 Southeast Asian Games.  Didal is currently looking to qualify for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, and if she can do so, it’s highly likely that the Pinay skater can become an even bigger star in the industry.    Marck Espejo After his spectacular collegiate career with the Ateneo Blue Eagles, Marck Espejo's colorful career as part of the men's national volleyball team and in the club league continues to blossom. Just like Bryan Bagunas, Espejo will be showing his skills internationally with a stint in Thailand following a historic silver medal finish at the 30th SEA Games.   Yuka Saso After a decorated amateur career that saw her  participate in major tournaments such as the Ladies’ European Tour, the Summer Youth Olympics and claim top honors in the 2018 Asian Games, 2018 and 2019 Philippine Ladies Open, and the 2019 Girls’ Junior PGA Championship, 18-year old Pinay golfer Yuka Saso finally made the jump to pro in November of 2019.  With even more competitions in store plus a 2020 Tokyo Olympics berth in her crosshairs, it’s quite likely that we hear more about Saso in the coming months.  Carlos Yulo Perhaps no other young athlete in the Philippines shot to stardom faster than gymnastics phenomenon Carlos Edriel Yulo. After a gold medal finish in the floor exercise at the 2019 World Championships in Stuttgart, Yulo hauled in even more hardware in the 2019 Southeast Asian Games, taking home two more gold medals and five silvers.  Yulo’s spectacular 2019 earned him a spot in the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, and if his SEA Games and World Championships performances are any indication, Caloy is bound for another podium finish on the biggest stage there is.   Eya Laure Last UAAP season’s rookie of the year will return as the heir apparent of Season 81 MVP Sisi Rondina. With her national team stint, all eyes will be on the younger Laure as she reunites with older sister EJ as they try to bring University of Sto. Tomas back in the Finals after falling short last year. Hidilyn Diaz 2019 was another big year for Olympic silver medalist weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz, highlighted by her first ever gold medal in the 2019 Southeast Asian Games. Diaz also finished with silver medals in the 2019 Asian Championships and a bronze in the 2019 World Championships.  All those podium finishes are crucial in Diaz’s quest for another Olympics berth in 2020. Should the 28-year lock up another spot in the Summer Games in Tokyo, we could see another Olympic medal coming home.    Kat Tolentino  After initially announcing that she would not come back for her final season in the UAAP, Kat Tolentino changed her decision and will suit up for the Ateneo Lady Eagles once last time, providing a great morale-booster in their bid for back-to-back titles. Tolentino’s leadership will be tested as she will be leading a young team.      Joshua Pacio 23-year old Joshua “The Passion” Pacio proved to be the brightest spot for Philippine MMA stable Team Lakay in 2019. After opening the year with a questionnable decision loss to Yosuke Saruta, Pacio silenced any doubts in the rematch and regained the ONE Strawweight World Championship with a highlight-reel headkick knockout. Pacio would follow that up with another masterful performance, this time with a second-round submission win over top contender Rene Catalan before the end of the year.  2020 is shaping up to become another banner year for the rising Pinoy star, as he’s scheduled for another title defense on January 31st in Manila, this time against former champ Alex Silva of Brazil. A win for Pacio will solidify his claim of being the best strawweight ever in ONE Championship history.     Louie Romero The Adamson University freshman displayed great potential during the pre-season when she piloted the Lady Falcons to title win in the PVL Season 3 Collegiate Conference. Romero is expected to be a gem of a setter for the young Adamson squad hoping make a return in the UAAP Final Four. Manny Pacquiao While eight-division world champion Manny Pacquiao is certainly in the twilight of his professional boxing career, 2019 showed that he is still one of the best around. A successful title defense over Adrien Broner followed by an impressive dismantling of the previously-undefeated Keith Thurman to capture the WBA’s primary world title proved that even at 40, Manny Pacquiao is still a big name in the sport.  With Pacquiao targeting an early return in 2020, more big names are lined up to fight “the People’s Champ”, including names like Danny Garcia, Shawn Porter, and even a title-unification bout against Errol Spence. Still, the biggest fight that is out there proves to be a rematch against Floyd Mayweather Jr, granted that “Money” finally bites.    Faith Nisperos A key addition for the repeat-seeking Ateneo de Manila University. The highly-touted rookie hitter will add height and firepower for the Lady Eagles in UAAP Season 82 women’s volleyball. In the previous PVL Collegiate Conference, Nisperos flashed her scoring prowess, exploding for 35 points in one outing.   Robert Bolick The two best rookies of 2019 were CJ Perez and Robert Bolick. We know what we can expect from CJ, but Bolick is an interesting case as 2020 will be his return from knee injury. Bolick could still win Rookie of the Year, but even if he doesn’t, his return to Northport could push the reloaded Batang Pier from a Cinderella team to full-on PBA title contender.   Joshua Retamar His playmaking skills as well as his efficiency on net defense during the national team’s silver medal finish in the 30th Southeast Asian Games makes him a setter to watch out for come UAAP. Retamar is an asset for National University’s three-peat bid.       Kai Sotto The Philippines' 7-foot-2, 17-year-old is opening eyes as he suits up for Atlanta-based The Skills Factory - so much so that he has already gotten interest from quite a few US NCAA schools. Before Sotto continues breaking the glass ceiling for Filipinos, though, he will go home for a while to wear the flag with Mighty Sports-Pilipinas in the 2020 Dubai International Basketball Tournament.   Jema Galanza Coming off a great outing to close the PVL Season 3 highlighted by copping the Open Conference MVP award, expectations are high for Jema Galanza as Creamline aims to reclaim the PVL Reinforced Conference crown and complete an Open Conference three-peat.      Kobe Paras Many questioned just what the 6-foot-6 tantalizing talent would bring to the table for UP - but more often than not, he had all the answers as he led the Fighting Maroons to their second straight Final Four. In the end, Paras was actually the steadying force State U needed in what was a hyped up season. They may not have made it back to the Finals, but they still got much more motivation as they run it back for next year.   Pat Aquino What's next for the most decorated mentor in women's basketball? Pat Aquino followed up a six-peat for National U with the Philippines' first-ever gold medal in women's basketball in the SEA Games. Without a doubt, he will only continue steering the sport forward especially as the likes of UST and FEU are already gearing up to put up greater challenges in the new year.   Isaac Go Isaac Go is technically not the no. 1 pick of the 2019 PBA Draft but he is without a doubt, the no. 1 prospect of the year. His top selection from the special Gilas Pilipinas Draft is proof of that. Gilas Pilipinas has the FIBA Asia Cup Qualifiers on deck in 2020 and as a new era dawns on the national team, all eyes will be on the biggest piece for the future that’s already drafted into the new Philippine squad......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 1st, 2020

Hybrid Gilas for FIBA Asia Cup?

Six games in three windows over a 12-month period are scheduled for the Philippines in Group A of the FIBA Asia Cup 2021 qualifiers and SBP president Al Panlilio said the other day it’s likely that Gilas will employ a hybrid lineup when the national team hosts Thailand to open the campaign on Feb. 20......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsDec 27th, 2019

Pinoy Basketball in 2019: High, low, and then High again

Another year, another time when basketball literally did not stop in the Philippines. There was a lot to see when it came to Pinoy hoops in 2019, as if everyone was trying to make sure to end the decade on a bang. It was definitely a pretty hectic year for Philippine basketball, proving time and again that ball truly is life.   SPIDER-MEN, GRAND SLAMS, AND EPIC TRILOGIES The PBA is technically still not over, with the 2019 PBA Governors’ Cup stretching all the way to mid January 2020. The country’s top league for sure had a lot happening, perhaps most infamously being in the 2019 Philippine Cup Finals when a random fan dressed as the friendly neighborhood Spider-Man stormed the court late in Game 5 between San Miguel Beer and Magnolia. Safe to say, things got crazy. The other PBA Spider-Man, Arwind Santos, saw his signature dunk banned by the league. He also got fined P200k for hurling racial gestures against an opposing import and is now indefinitely suspended by his own team for fighting against his own import. All that with Peter Parker having his identity revealed in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (*spoiler alert*) and it’s just been a pretty wacky year for Spider-Men. San Miguel also tried to win a Grand Slam this year, it looked great too as the Beermen won their second title despite being a no. 7 seed and were undefeated almost halfway through the third conference. But just like this current batch of Beermen’s first Grand Slam attempt, they never really got close as Barangay Ginebra ended the bid in round 1 of the Governors’ Cup. Oh and speaking of the Gin Kings, they’re back in the Governors’ Cup Finals... against Meralco. Oh yes, we’re getting a Trilogy. If that’s not the way to start a whole new decade then we don’t know what is.   HIGH, LOW, AND THEN HIGH AGAIN Switching over to Gilas Pilipinas, the national team was pretty busy this year, which is one of the way reasons why the current PBA season is getting dragged all the way to the next decade. After a gloomy ending in 2018, Gilas showed us where the lights shine brightest by booking a trip to the 2019 FIBA World Cup in China. Gilas overcome freezing weather in Kazakhstan to advance, making sure that the Philippines will be stringing together three straight World Cup appearances. Once Gilas got to China though, it appeared that the national team got blinded by said bright lights. Loss after loss after loss after loss after loss, the Philippines ended up finishing in 32nd place out of 32 teams, setting the Gilas program back a couple of notches. But 2019 will not be a lost year though, as Gilas put together an incredible loaded team to put on a show in the Southeast Asian Games in Manila. Win after win after win after win after win, the Philippines ended up with a 13th straight gold medal in the SEA Games.   FLAMING OUT Fresh from a first ABL title in 2018, San Miguel-Alab Pilipinas was off to a sizzling start for the 2019 season, opening with eight straight wins. The team returned most of its title-winning core from the season prior and added behemoth PJ Ramos as a second import. Even with losses here and there, Alab maintained its number one ranking for most of the year... that is until injuries caught up to the team. Alab flamed out it its title defense, first losing the no. 1 seed to Formosa and then getting swept out of the opening round of the playoffs by Hong Kong Eastern, the team they swept in the semis the year before. Ultimately, Alab lost six straight games on its way to giving up its title. Fortunately, Alab has ended the decade with a four-game run and Jimmy Alapag’s crew is currently tied for first place in the new 2019-2020 season.   BRAND NEW KNIGHTS After a banner first conference, the MPBL quickly expanded to an incredible 26 teams. Following a crazy season with 364 games played, and old MBA dynasty in the San Juan Knights emerged as champions, taking down Davao Occidental in a classic five-game series for the title. The Knights’ title conquest came in the middle of the year and the MPBL is back in action, with 31 teams battling it out in the ongoing Lakan Cup. 2019 saw a ton of basketball games to be played, and 2020 looks like there’s no slowing down in terms of hoops action. Let’s get to it.   — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 26th, 2019

Leipzig top in Germany at halfway stage, but Bayern revived

By James Ellingworth, Associated Press Is this the season when Bayern Munich's seven-year hold on the German title ends? A poor start and a humiliating 5-1 loss to Frankfurt cost Niko Kovac his job as Bayern coach and gave teams like Leipzig and surprise title contender Borussia Mönchengladbach hope of victory. Bayern has bounced back under interim coach Hansi Flick, though, and is third in the table, four points behind leader Leipzig. That's earned Flick an extension until at least the end of the season. It's been a tale of dueling goalscorers, with Robert Lewandowski having scored 19 goals in 17 games for Bayern, and Timo Werner one goal behind for Leipzig. For Gladbach, goalkeeper Yann Sommer has been crucial to their title challenge. Borussia Dortmund has been powerful on its day, but the team is also inconsistent and brittle. Losing to Bayern 4-0 last month was a big dent to Dortmund's title belief. Last Sunday's games were the last of 2019 and the Bundesliga returns from its winter break on Jan. 17. PLAYER OF THE SEASON SO FAR He turned 31 in August and Lewandowski shows no sign of slowing down. The Polish forward scored in Bayern's first 11 Bundesliga games and has racked up 30 goals across all competitions. He's taking time off during the winter break to have groin surgery. Werner has been almost as prolific, including a remarkable performance with three goals and three assists in an 8-0 thrashing of Mainz last month. For Dortmund, Jadon Sancho's in hot form with eight goals in his last six Bundesliga games. But perhaps no one's been as vital to their team as Rouwen Hennings. The 32-year-old Hennings doesn't have the star status of Lewandowski or Sancho but his 11 goals for struggling Fortuna are four more than the rest of the team put together. SURPRISE OF THE SEASON Gladbach's golden age was the 1970s, when it won five Bundesligas in eight years. With its run to second, Gladbach has been a feelgood story for German fans of other clubs who dislike Bayern's wealth and see Leipzig as less a soccer club than an advertising board for energy drinks giant Red Bull. Gladbach has nothing like the budget of Bayern or Leipzig, but has built a solid team with attacking firepower from Marcus Thuram, son of former French defender Lilian Thuram, and Swiss forward Breel Embolo. A comeback 2-1 win over Bayern this month showed its a serious contender. Kai Havertz experienced the season's most unwelcome surprise when fans of his own team, Bayer Leverkusen, booed him this month. The attacking midfielder started the season rated as one of Germany's most promising young players, but he's looked listless in recent games and last scored in September. GOAL OF THE SEASON Bayern's 46 goals in the Bundesliga have included some gems. Philippe Coutinho scored with an outrageous flick from the outside of his foot against Werder Bremen last week. Lewandowski's hit some long-range free kicks and shrugged off four defenders to score against Frankfurt, the only bright spot in a heavy loss for Bayern. The highlight of Leipzig's title charge might just be Christopher Nkunku juggling the ball through the Bayer Leverkusen defense and past the goalkeeper in October. For sheer fireworks, no one beats Hertha Berlin's Javairo Dilrosun. The Dutch winger picked up the ball on the left wing and cut inside past four defenders — beating one of them twice — before scoring against Paderborn. WHO'LL BE CHAMPION? If Bayern's recovery under Flick continues, an eighth straight title is definitely possible, if only because of the depth in its squad. The Munich team was packed with individual talent, even if Kovac was defeated by the puzzle of how to make them all play well together. There's also a bench filled with hungry young players such as New Zealand midfielder Sarpreet Singh and the Dutch forward Joshua Zirkzee, who's scored in each of his first two Bundesliga appearances. Leipzig takes a four-point lead into 2020, but depends heavily on core players such as Werner and the in-form Marcel Sabitzer and Patrik Schick. Losing any of them to injury could be a fatal blow. Gladbach has less depth than either of them, but unlike them, it won't be balancing the Bundesliga with any European competitions in the spring. CHAMPIONS LEAGUE QUALIFICATION The fight for the four Champions League spots is wide open, with at least eight teams making a strong claim. Behind the leading trio of Leipzig, Gladbach, and Bayern, there's a chasing pack of Borussia Dortmund, Schalke, Leverkusen, Hoffenheim, and Freiburg. All have played Champions League football in recent years, with the exception of Freiburg, but they have all been inconsistent this season. WHO'S GOING DOWN? The relegation fight is just as close as the scrap for European places. Promoted Paderborn is last but showed it has claws by beating Frankfurt 2-1 last weekend. The other automatic relegation spot is occupied by Werder Bremen, which is in danger of its first relegation since 1981. Werder ended 2019 with four straight defeats, two of them by five-goal margins, and with club management embroiled in conflict with fans over the sale of their stadium's naming rights. If Werder can climb out of danger, it would likely be at the expense of one of two Rhineland rivals, Cologne or Fortuna Düsseldorf, or else Mainz......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 25th, 2019

New Stars and New Eras: A look back at MMA in 2019

2019 was once again a pretty eventful year in terms of mixed martial arts, especially on the local front. In 2019, we saw Pinoy stars rise and fall, and some have managed to rise again before the decade’s end. Before we look forward to 2020, let’s take a look back at some of the biggest storylines in the world of Filipino, Asian and international mixed martial arts.   Team Lakay’s Troubles 2019 kicked off with not one, not two, but five world champions from the famed Filipino MMA stable Team Lakay. Pinoy MMA icon Eduard Folayang was on his second run as the ONE Lightweight World Champion, Kevin Belingon was enjoying his status as the ONE Bantamweight World Champion, Geje Eustaquio reigned over the flyweight division as the ONE Flyweight World Champion, and rising star Joshua Pacio, the ONE Strawweight World Champion, was the team’s youngest titleholder. Outside ONE, Stephen Loman continued on his reign as the BRAVE CF Bantamweight World Champion. And then, the dominoes began to fall. Pacio was the first to drop his title, losing a close split decision to Japan’s Yosuke Saruta. Eustaquio followed suit, dropping a controversial decision to rival Adriano Moraes, and then Folayang and Belingon would also lose their titles in heartbreaking fashion at ONE: A New Era in Japan. It was, to say the least, a rough start to the year for the Benguet-based team, but they would manage to bounce back before the year was done, with Folayang and Eustaquio both claiming wins to end the year.   The Rise of "The Passion" 23-year old prodigy Joshua “The Passion” Pacio was the youngest member of Team Lakay to hold a title heading into 2019, and heading into 2020, he remains the lone member of  Team Lakay to hold a ONE world title. After losing to Yosuke Saruta in January, Pacio was granted an immediate rematch and made good on the second opportunity by blasting Saruta with a head kick to score the KO and reclaim the ONE Strawweight World Championship. Pacio would then take on the clear-cut number one contender in fellow Pinoy Rene “D’ Challenger” Catalan, and make quick work of him as well, scoring a second-round submission win to retain the title. Even before the end of the year, Pacio already has his next assignment, as he’s set to face former champion Alex Silva at ONE: Fire and Fury in Manila on January 31st. A win for Pacio cements his status as one of, if not, the best ONE strawweight ever. While Team Lakay’s 2019 was, for the most part, a struggle, Pacio was no doubt the Team’s brightest spot.   A New Era 2019 proved to be another milestone year for Asia-based martial arts promotion ONE Championship, as they were able to penetrate new markets in terms of live shows as well as broadcast deals. ONE began the year with a new partnership with Turner Broadcasting, which gave North American fans access to ONE’s brand of martial arts through B/R Live and TNT. In terms of live events, ONE was able to finally plant their flag in one of the biggest markets for MMA in the world, Japan. In March, ONE put on their first ever show in Japan, ONE: A New Era in Tokyo, which featured some of the promotion’s biggest names including  Demetrious Johnson, Eddie Alvarez, Shinya Aoki, Angela Lee, Aung La N Sang, Eduard Folayang, and many more. To celebrate their historic 100th event, ONE returned to Tokyo for ONE: Century, their biggest card ever, featuring seven world title bouts and the promotion’s biggest stars, and then some.   In 2020, ONE plans to break through to even more new markets, possible including a show in the United States.   The ‘Return’ of Jon Jones While Jon Jones officially reclaimed his spot at the top of the UFC’s light heavyweight division in December of 2018, it was in 2019 that he returned to his dominant ways. After stopping Alexander Gustafsson in 2018 to reclaim the UFC Light Heavyweight crown, Jones handily defeated tough challengers in Anthony Smith and Thiago “Maretta” Santos to retain the titles. While the Smith and Santos bouts were lackluster in the eyes of many, it showed that even on his bad days, Jon Jones is better than most people on their best days.   “Rush” Retires Again While it was something that was expected, 37-year old Georges St-Pierre officially retired from MMA, again, in February. The former long-time welterweight king and pound-for-pound great made a triumphant return to the UFC in 2017, dethroning Michael Bisping to become the new UFC Middleweight Champion. GSP would never get to defend the title, as he would relinquish it not long after due to concerns with ulcerative colitis. While GSP has remained inactive since, the whispers of a super-fight with reigning UFC Lightweight Champion Khabib Nurmagomedov remain present, and 2020 could possibly see that coming to fruition.   Grand Prix Greatness In 2019, ONE Championship introduced a new and exciting attraction, the ONE Lightweight and Flyweight World Grand Prix tournaments.  Eight of the best fighters from each division would battle it out in a tournament-style competition, and the winner would become the ONE World Grand Prix Champion and earn a title shot against the division's respective titleholder.  Making their debuts in the lightweight and flyweight tournaments were former UFC champs Eddie Alvarez and Demetrious Johnson respectively, and as it played out the two would have very different outcomes.  Alvarez saw himself get upset in the quarterfinals by Russian knockout artist Timofey Nastyukhin. The former UFC lightweight king would get another chance in the tournament after defeating Eduard Folayang in a last-minute semifinal matchup, but another injury would keep him out of the finale at ONE: Century in Tokyo. Reigning ONE Lightweight World Champion Christian Lee ended up stepping in on short notice to defeat tournament favorite Saygid Guseyn Arslanalieve and become a double-champion.  Johnson, meanwhile, breezed through his quarterfinals and semifinals bouts to set up a finale showdown with Filipino star Danny Kingad. In the Finale, Kingad fought valiantly but ultimately fell to Johnson via Unanimous Decision, setting up a must-see matchup between DJ and reigning ONE Flyweight World Champion Adriano Moraes in 2020.    Baddest Motherf**ker Jorge Masdival has long been a staple in the UFC’s lightweight ranks for years, but it wasn’t until 2019 that “Gamebred” made headlines. After a hiatus in 2018, Masvidal returned with a bang in 2019, knocking out former title challenger Darren Till, and then followed that up with a 5-second flying knee knockout over former ONE Welterweight king Ben Askren. The popularity and momentum that Masvidal had garnered was enough to bring a certain Stockton star out of retirement and that set up one of the most talked-about UFC title bouts in 2019: Masvidal vs. Nate Diaz for the title of Baddest Motherf**ker. Masvidal lived up to the name and pieced Diaz up with strikes in the early rounds, before eventually opening up a cut that was just too big for the fight to go on. Much to the dismay of Masvidal, Diaz, and the crowd in New York, the fight was stopped. Still, it was nothing short of a testament to just how dangerous the new and improved version of Jorge Masvidal is. Expect him to challenge for a title in 2020.   MMA stars shine in 2019 SEA Games A number of Pinoy mixed martial artists showcased their skills in different battlegrounds during the recently-concluded 2019 Southeast Asian Games, which was held in the Philippines. from November 30 to December 11. Reigning URCC champion Mark “Mugen” Striegl took home gold in Combat Sambo, while former ONE title challenger Rene Catalan settled for Silver after an injury dashed his dreams of getting gold. Another URCC veteran in Ariel Lee Lampacan also took home SEA Games gold, this time in the Muay Thai competition. ONE Super Series veteran Ryan Jakiri took home silver. The SEA Games kickboxing event saw three MMA stars from Team Lakay take home gold medals, as Gina Iniong, Jerry Olsim, and Jean Claude Saclag all reigned over their respective divisions. Iniong, of course, is a ONE Women’s Atomweight contender, while Olsim is a veteran of Rich Franklin’s ONE Warrior Series. Saclag, meanwhile, is one of Team Lakay’s representatives in the Japan-based promotion Shooto.       .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 24th, 2019

2019: To sweep or not to sweep in collegiate basketball

The 2019 collegiate basketball season will always be remembered as the time when all of NCAA defending champion San Beda, UAAP Men’s defending champion Ateneo, and UAAP Women’s defending champion National U were trying for season sweeps. Two of them did it, one of them didn’t. All in all, though, that storyline that had something to do with history defined NCAA 95 and UAAP 82. A tale of two leagues – when it comes to foreign student-athletes NCAA 95 was the last season wherein the Grand Old League’s 10 member-schools were still able to trot out foreign student-athletes. This, after more than a decade of the likes of Sam Ekwe, Sudan Daniel, Allwell Oraeme, Prince Eze, and Mike Nzeusseu setting the bar higher for big men. Over in UAAP 82, Beninese ball of energy Soulemane Chabi Yo and Ivorian tower Ange Kouame jostled throughout the tournament for the recognition as top individual player. In the end, Chabi Yo followed in the footsteps of Cameroon’s Ben Mbala and Nigeria’s Bright Akhuetie as Season MVPs. The NCAA will go local from here on out while the UAAP will still parade promising prospects from overseas – what’s certain is that both leagues will go all-out to ascertain that the action will never stop. Rising stars become shining stars Robert Bolick left San Beda with a big, big hole at point guard – only for Evan Nelle to waste no time proving the Red Lions remain in good hands. UST’s fast and furious attack needed a fast and furious playmaker – and the Growling Tigers got just that in the form of Mark Nonoy. In his first year as FEU’s lead guard, L-Jay Gonzales showed time and time again why he was always seen as the next one in the Tamaraws’ long, long line of great guards. The story of the season in terms of guards, however, has got to be Fran Yu who came out of nowhere to energize Letran to a pleasant surprise of a championship. UP might 2019 was the first time in a long, long while – or maybe even ever – that UP was considered a shoo-in for the Final Four. The Fighting Maroons had just ended a 32-year Finals absence and a 21-year playoff drought last year and came into this season still with Bright Akhuetie, Jun Manzo, and Gomez de Liano brothers Javi and Juan, but also now with Kobe Paras and Ricci Rivero. In all, State U lived up to the hype and made it back-to-back Final Four appearances, but at the same time, fell short of fulfilling the promise of its fully loaded line-up. Still, continued contention is nothing but a welcome development for Diliman which had been experiencing dark, dark days for far too long. Gilas Pilipinas calling With Tab Baldwin overseeing the program, Gilas Pilipinas will try once more to take a long-term, big-picture view – especially with the 2023 FIBA World Cup looming large. With that, the American-Kiwi mentor tapped on five collegiate standouts to form the foundation of the national team – Ateneo’s Isaac Go and Nieto twins Mike and Matt, UE’s Rey Suerte, and San Sebastian’s Allyn Bulanadi. And with that, the Philippines is yet again leaning on the best of the best of collegiate basketball to wear the flag and do the country proud. It’s a new day, it’s a new generation The NCAA hit home runs in each and every one of its coaching changes. Bonnie Tan raised banner no. 18 for Letran in his first year. Randy Alcantara has Mapua prepped and primed to take flight. Louie Gonzalez has given JRU an attitude. Oliver Bunyi and Cholo Martin have EAC and Arellano, respectively, headed in the right direction. The same cannot be said for the UAAP as both of its new head coaches found themselves on the outside looking into the playoff picture. Jermaine Byrd had La Salle fighting, but ultimately failed to find a finishing kick. UE also kept coming with the leadership of Lawrence Chongson, but eventually ended eliminated. Teeth out, claws out, all-out UST has a proud program in basketball, but only had nine wins to show in 42 games from 2016 to 2018 That all came to an end in 2019 as Aldin Ayo had the Growling Tigers, well, growling from the get-go. Bombing away at their opponents and forcing them to keep up, Espana made its mark as a legitimate contender that made it all the way to the Finals. There, they were sent away by Ateneo’s championship-winning machine, but the future remains bright for the black and gold with all of Season MVP Chabi Yo, Rookie of the Year Nonoy, captain CJ Cansino, Brent Paraiso, and Sherwin Concepcion, among others, coming back for more. Fitting farewell for Ateneo’s championship core Thirdy Ravena. Isaac Go. Mike Nieto. Matt Nieto. Adrian Wong. Those five left Ateneo on top of the world – having claimed a three-peat as well as completed a historic season sweep. And without a doubt, those five were also the catalysts in this new golden age for the Blue Eagles – a golden age which has seen them set and then raise the standard for team glory time and time again. Katipunan will have a tough time moving forward from those five, but at the same time, having the likes of Ange Kouame, Will Navarro, Gian Mamuyac, and SJ Belangel just waiting in the wings makes it easier. Who run the world? National U has not lost a game in 2,270 days. National U has not lost a game in 74 months. National U has not lost a game in six years. The last time head coach Pat Aquino had to lift up the spirits of his Lady Bulldogs was back in October 5, 2013 when they bowed to La Salle in the winner-take-all Finals Game 3. Since then, the blue and gold has been the gold standard of women’s basketball all while giving its opponents the blues. That didn’t change this year as behind Jack Animam and Rhena Itesi as well as welcome additions Kelli Hayes and Camille Clarin, National U continued to have all the answers – even for back-to-back Season MVP Grace Irebu and UST. Shock the system Letran was, in no way, given a chance to deny archrival San Beda’s bid for a perfect season – or much more, win the championship altogether. But the Knights didn’t listen and took that chance themselves, catching just everybody by surprise by taking Game 1 and dealing the Red Lions their first defeat in the season. San Beda bounced back in Game 2, but in the decider, Jerrick Balanza, Bonbon Batiller, Larry Muyang, and Yu just willed Letran to the title. Now, the Knights are kings for the 18th time – and indeed, they had no import, but had no problem. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 23rd, 2019

Cebu hosts world arnis tilt in July

The Philippine Eskrima Kali Arnis Federation is on cloud nine after bagging 14 gold medals in the recent 30th SEA Games where host Philippines regained the overall crown......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsDec 21st, 2019

Philippines 2nd hosting of ASEAN Para Games pushed back over budget issues

This marks the Philippines’ second time hosting the ASEAN Para Games since 2005......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsDec 21st, 2019

Pres. Duterte awards Team PHI the Order of Lapu-Lapu

President Rodrigo Duterte conferred the Order of Lapu-Lapu to the Philippine athletes who brought honor to the country in the recently concluded 30th Southeast Asian Games on Wednesday during the incentives awarding at the Rizal Hall of the Malacanang Palace. Aside from the generous cash incentives from the Philippine Sports Commission and the President, Team Philipines also received the distinguished honor for winning the overall championship in the biennial meet for the second time since 2005. Duterte welcomed almost 600 SEA Games medalists led by Team Philippines Chef de Mission and PSC Chairman William 'Butch' Ramirez. Also in attendance were Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea, Philippine Olympic Committee President Abraham 'Bambol' Tolentino, Philippine SEAG Organizing Committee Chairman and Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano, Commissioners Celia Kiram, Arnold Agustin and Charles Maxey along with the presidents and secretary generals of the different national sports associations. By law, a gold medal fetches P300,000. Silver medal winners will receive P150,000 while bronze medal reward is P60,000.  A total of P79 million were given away as incentives for athletes. In his speech, Ramirez recognized the role of government in the success of the national team on its SEAG campaign saying “we are lucky to have a President who support us fully and has a big heart for our athletes.” During Duterte’s term, the national athletes were given nutrition support, higher allowances, refurbished facilities, new equipment and more opportunities for training and exposures.  “When we came in, the athletes received on P5000 meal allowance.  Now on top of that they also get P25,000 worth of nutrition support monthly,” said Ramirez, adding that these investments on the national team paid handsomely by the landslide win of Team Philippines in the SEAG and “hopefully an Olympic gold soon.”.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 18th, 2019

POC awards P33 M worth of cash incentives to SEA Games gold medalists

For the first time, the Philippine Olympic Committee gave away cash incentives to gold medalists in the recently concluded 30th Southeast Asian Games. POC president Abraham ‘Bambol’ Tolentino on Tuesday led the distribution of incentives to the athletes who delivered the country’s 149 golds in the biennial meet during the POC general assembly held at Conrad Hotel. “Noong nakaraang taon, sa pamumuno ni dating POC President Ricky Vargas, tayo po ay nakapagbigay ng mahigit P14M bilang incentives para sa mga nagwagi sa Asian Games at Youth Olympic Games,” said Tolentino in his speech during the GA, which also served as a thanksgiving event. “Ngayon po naman, for the first time in Philippine SEA Games history, ating ginagantimpalaan ang ating mga magigiting na atleta sa pamamagitan ng mga cash incentives,” he added. More than P33 million plus were given away to athletes as part of the POC’s efforts to reward those who have given honor to the country, which won the overall championship for the first time since ruling the regional sports meet back in 2005 edition of the Games also held in the Philippines.          Individual athletes received P200,000 for each gold medal won while athletes in team sports collected P50,000 to P75,000 depending on the number of members in each squad.   “Siyempre iba ‘yung formula ng team, if you're gold medal, like basketball players, you have 14 players, di naman P200k bawat isa. Ganoon rin naman yung sa PSC. May formula yun, 25% of the basic. So kung 25% of 300k, that's how much, 75k?” Tolentino explained. The cash incentives came from donations coming from the private sector including the San Miguel Corporation, MVP Sports Foundation and the Philippine Basketball Association collected by the POC.  “At ito po ay nangyari sapagkat ang POC ngayon ay nakakakalap ng mga donasyon galing sa pribadong sector,” said Tolentino. “Atin pong pinasasalamatan ng taos-puso ang ating mga private sponsors na mula noong panahon ni Pres Vargas at magpa hanggang ngayon ay nagtitiwala sa liderato ng Philippine Olympic Committee.” The POC head also bared that they are working on giving away cash incentives for the silver and bronze medalists. Team Philippines hauled in 117 silver and 121 bronze medals. “At ngayon, nang ang inyong lingkod po ay manawagan para mabuo natin ang pondo para mabigyan ang lahat ng medalist sa SEA Games, tumugon po ang Udenna/Phoenix ni Mr. Dennis Uy at ang akin pong mga kasamahang congressman sa Mababang Kapulungan,” said Tolentino. Silver and bronze medalists are expected to collect their incentives on Dec. 19 or 20......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 17th, 2019

Liverpool extends EPL lead as Leicester draws, Chelsea loses

By Mattias Karen, Associated Press LONDON (AP) — Mo Salah and Liverpool are running away with the Premier League. Salah used his blistering pace and a bit of trickery to score both goals in Liverpool's 2-0 win over Watford on Saturday — a result that extended the Reds' lead to 10 points in the table as they move closer to a first Premier League title in 30 years. Closest challenger Leicester was held to a 1-1 draw at home by Norwich, while defending champion Manchester City is a full 17 points behind in third place ahead of its game at Arsenal on Sunday. Fourth-place Chelsea, meanwhile, slumped to a fourth loss in five league games with a 1-0 home defeat to Bournemouth — giving added hope to the handful of teams chasing the final Champions League spot. No one seems able to keep up with Liverpool, though. Jürgen Klopp's team has won 16 of 17 league games so far, with one draw, and are on course for a record-breaking season. “The most important thing that you have to show in this period of the season is resilience, and that's what we showed again,” Klopp said. SURGING SALAH Salah made it four goals in two games as he followed up his Champions League double with another brace at Anfield. Salah finished off a lightning counterattack to give the host the lead in the 38th minute at Anfield and then made sure of the victory with a cheeky backheel from a tight angle in injury time. It wasn't all so easy for Liverpool, though, even against a Watford that is last in the standings. Only poor finishing prevented the visitors from taking at least a point in Nigel Pearson's first game in charge. Striker Troy Deeney, Will Hughes, Abdoulaye Doucoure and Gerard Deulofeu all missed good chances to score for Watford. Salah was as clinical as ever, though, taking his tally to nine league goals this season. The only negative for Liverpool was when Georginio Wijnaldum was forced off with an apparent hamstring problem, meaning he could miss the upcoming Club World Cup in Qatar. LEICESTER FALTERS Leicester saw its eight-game winning streak in the league ended by Norwich. Jamie Vardy's streak of scoring in eight straight league games also ended after his header from a corner was ruled an own-goal by Norwich goalkeeper Tim Krul, who directed the ball into the net with his hand. That goal equalized for Leicester in the 38th minute after Norwich striker Teemu Pukki had given the visitors a surprising lead in the 26th. Vardy had a chance to score early in the second half when he rounded Krul, but rolled the ball onto the outside of the post from a tight angle. “We weren't quite at our level but we managed to get back and get a point,” Leicester manager Brendan Rodgers said. “It was probably the right result, we didn't start so well and our passing was slow.” SLUMPING CHELSEA After surging up the table into the top four, Frank Lampard's Chelsea is in the middle of an alarming slump. Dan Gosling's late goal gave Bournemouth the win, with Chelsea's grip on fourth place suddenly looking shaky. “We need more urgency in our play,” Lampard said. “If you're an attacking player, get at people, do things that are positive, don't play safe. We play generally too safe through the game.” Manchester United and Wolverhampton Wanderers both have a chance to pull within two points of Lampard's team on Sunday. Gosling scored an 84th-minute winner when he flicked the ball over Kepa Arrizabalaga and into the net despite standing with his back to goal, ending Bournemouth's run of five successive league losses. SURPRISING SHEFFIELD John Fleck scored twice as Sheffield United climbed provisionally into fifth place by beating fellow promoted side Aston Villa 2-0. Fleck put the hosts ahead in the 50th minute by steering home an assist by John Lundstram, and added the second in the 73rd. Villa had a chance to get back in the game after VAR awarded a penalty for handball by John Egan, but Jack Grealish belted the resulting spot kick against the crossbar. In a game between midtable teams, Chris Wood scored his seventh goal of the season as Burnley ended a run of three successive losses with a 1-0 win against an injury-hit Newcastle. Wood's 58th-minute header was enough to give Sean Dyche's side its fifth league win at home this season, all without conceding. In the late game, West Ham eased the pressure on manager Manuel Pellegrini with a 1-0 win at Southampton. Sebastian Haller put West Ham ahead in the 37th minute by slotting a low shot in off the post for his fifth goal of the season, which was enough to give the Hammers only their second win in 11 league games......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 15th, 2019