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ALT Philippines 2020: Filipino contemporary art reimagined

After a multitude of reimagined experiences it has brought to its customers, Smart Signature now dares consumers to reimagine the way they see local art. Introducing ALT Philippines 2020, a first-of-its-kind collaborative project among 10 galleries in Manila that aims to not only showcase contemporary Filipino art but also to reframe the notion of the art show itself......»»

Category: entertainmentSource: thestandard thestandardFeb 14th, 2020

Digital Esports Platform KALARO launches in October

The-AsiaGroup.com Inc. officially announces the launch of Kalaro on October 12, 2020. It will be Asia's first fully-integrated end-to-end Esports digital platform made in the Philippines by an internationally-experienced team of Filipino tech-experts......»»

Category: sportsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsSep 19th, 2020

Filipino-inspired prenup shoot in Cebu is getting online attention

CEBU CITY, Philippines— A traditional Filipino-inspired prenup shoot done here is gaining attention online. Anthony Hejie Suralta, a wedding photographer, shared with CDN Digital some of his prenup shots taken last September 13, 2020. Suralta had the privilege of taking the photos of couple Jace Panuncillo and Lorelei Repollo, who are both teachers. CDN Digital shared […] The post Filipino-inspired prenup shoot in Cebu is getting online attention appeared first on Cebu Daily News......»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsSep 15th, 2020

PSA: No foreign investments in CV for Q2 2020

CEBU CITY, Philippines — Investments in Central Visayas massively dropped when the coronavirus pandemic peaked during the second quarter this year. Figures posted by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) showed that the total investments both from foreign and Filipino nationals from April to June only amounted to P170.4 million. It was a 97.2 percent drop […] The post PSA: No foreign investments in CV for Q2 2020 appeared first on Cebu Daily News......»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsSep 13th, 2020

Q2 HR Solutions bags back-to-back IiP award

Q2 HR Solutions has bagged the 2020 Investors in People Platinum Award from Investors in People Philippines, the first time a Filipino company has earned the highest accreditation for two consecutive times......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsSep 13th, 2020

Behind the Scenes: The Heroes of ABS-CBN Sports

While the general public sees or hears the finished product on-air or online, most do not witness or appreciate those who worked tirelessly behind the scenes at ABS-CBN Sports. There’s an African proverb that says it takes a village to raise a child. Well, it took almost exactly that to make ABS-CBN Sports work. As we commemorate National Heroes Day in the country on the final day of ABS-CBN Sports, it is only fitting to acknowledge and thank those behind-the-scenes heroes who have been part of the amazing journey (DISCLAIMER: I may have left out some names, but it is purely unintentional so my apologies). Thank you, first and foremost, to our Chairman Emeritus Gabby Lopez, whose passion and love for sports led to the initiative that is ABS-CBN Sports. Thank you to our former President and CEO, Charo Santos-Concio, our current President and CEO, Carlo Katigbak, a true tennis fan, and our Chairman Mark Lopez, who showed us composure, class and grace as leaders.  Thank you to our beloved COO, Cory Vidanes, who allowed ABS-CBN Sports to reach a broader audience when it aired special events on Channel 2 as well as feature athletes and sports personalities on entertainment programs.   Thank you to the voice of ABS-CBN and former ABS-CBN Sports head, Peter Musngi, for leading the division during its early years. Thank you to Narrowcast head, Antonio “March” Ventosa, as well as his executive assistant, Trina Magallanes, for helping us navigate during the transtition period of ABS-CBN Sports.   Thank you to the captain of our ship, ABS-CBN Integrated Sports head, Dino Laurena, who inspired us to work harder and better to serve our audience.  Thank you to Sir Dino’s gatekeeper, his executive assistant, Donna Seat, who was our bridge whenever we needed to reach out to the boss. Thank you to S+A channel head and production head, Vince Rodriguez, LIGA channel head, Jojo Neri-Estacio and Business Unit Head, Jun Martinez. They were our constant guides who enabled us to provide quality content on broadcast despite immense internal and external pressure.  Thank you to the people who made sure we never went beyond our budget and reached our targets – our Finance team made up of Berg Capiz, Jem Castro and Lorna Gendrano. Thank you to our S+A On-Air team of Rommel Noviza, Janice Rulloda, Princess Basye, Biboy Diga, Mark Marinay, Arnold Saclolo, Borge Raval and Hans Espiritu as well as our Liga Channel team of  Anna Santos, Francis Patawaran, Aprille Signo and Joramie Roque, for ensuring everything airs on time.  Thank you to our Digital Head, Mico Halili, for his innovative and fresh ideas on the digitial space.   Thank you to the men and women who made our broadcast coverage as close to flawless – our Production Manager, Jennifer Jimenez, our directors, which include THE Abet Ramos, Al Neri, Raul de Ocampo and Rommel Pedrealba, and our technical directors made up of Elmond Salvahan, Jhonnald Garcia, Marvin Chavez, Bingbong Pangan, Arnold Bulaong and Joseph Vega. Thank you to the men and women who made sure our partner properties were happy with our coverage, and that everything was in place for each and every game or show we put out there – our Executive and Associate Producers Vic Caridad, Malou Neri, Ada Bayuga, Diana Sayson, Oxy del Rosario, Mae Mañalac, Aries Galot, Apples Dela Vega, Kristina Manzana, Roy Briones, Ledz Cahinhinan, JC Gonzales, Gab Gonzales and Manny Gabutina.  Thank you to those who crafted and produced memorable segments – our segment producers Eva Evangelista, Carlo Grajo, Cha Lucero, Mark Morados, Jeff Sta. Maria, Jet Montebon, Sharon Muli, Alex Brocoy, Mika Barrios, Bill Barrinuevo and Volta delos Santos as well as our video editors Pido Cruz and Fonz Fajatin. Thank you to those who put the right words into play – our writers Monica Magpantay, Paul Loyola, Jigs Guardiano, Adrian Dy, Sheiden Dela Cruz, Ken Natividad, Syjin Reyes and Migs Gomez. Thank you to those who gave the right cues to our anchors, analysts and courtside reporters – our panel director Larry "Care Mo Naman" Deang, our floor directors Miky "Gandara" Mirabueno, Lyanne Ocampo-Tan and Fritz Dizon. Thank you to the people who made sure that the right moments were captured – our Camera Control Unit made up of George Austria, Joel Supremo and Edgar Guarte, our Cameramen Lloyd Villamor, Rovic Pacis, Gerald "Superman" Fermin, Ron Fermin, Ronald Mangcoy, Michael Pico, Emman Andes, Butch Pineda and Mark Nicolas. Thank you to those who made sure we heard the sounds and voices loud and clear – our audio engineers Elias Javier, Ramil Ciruano, Albert Agbay, Jancel Abobo as well as our audiomen Joseph Nicolas and Ameng Atienza. Thank you to the guys who allowed us to get another look at the action – our EVS/Slomo Operators Joejay Abarquez, Raymond Biojon and Dido Batallion and VTR men Christian Abarquez, Kenneth Abarquez and Oliver Sañez. Thank you to the people responsible for making things more visible on our screens –our Electrician/Lighting Directors Alvin Saavedra and Jorge Paraon and our lightman Calvin Liong. Thank you to those who create those cool graphics and effects that catch our attention during games and shows - our Graphic Artists/Operators Jam Memdoza, Denice Ylagan, Erol Corpuz, Sara Concepcion, Jeff Jugueta and Kevin Camero. Thank you to the team who put the little things in order – our set-up assistants Jerald Testor, Ivan Castillo, Ferdie Mangaong, Remus Taniengra, Daniel Dimaculangan, Eduardo Dacumos, Ryan Ancheta, Allan Porsioncula, Laurence Sosa, Illac Alvarez, Benjo Asiatico, Manny Cajayon, Lepoldo Bofill, Victor Taniegra, Caleb Bautista, Jeremiah Mallari and Bennett Cabus. Thank you to the guys who provided the correct statistics and graphics – our panel scorers/GFX feeders Rico Bayuga, Ronaldo Serrano, Arvin Estabillo and Gilbert Serrano. Thank you to those who made our on-cam talents look good – our makeup artists Mylyn Concepcion, Nina Concepcion, Estrella Besabe, Norma Calubaquib and Nizel Reduta and our stylist Lyle Foz. Thank you to those who were always ready to lend a helping hand – our production assistants, Lian Salango, Pau Hiwatig, Helen Trinidad, Riri Gayoma, Jade Asuncion and Lovely Dela Cruz. Thank you for the imagination and artistry of our Creative Communications Management (CCM) team composed of Elirose Borja, Jerome Clavio, Djoanna San Jose, Lara Mae Allardo, Robin Lorete, Cristy Linga, Christopher Eli Sabat, Archimedes Asis (the voice of S+A), Jan Dormyl Espinosa, Aila Onagan and Nyro Mendoza. They say that advertising is the lifeblood of media and that we wouldn’t be able to deliver high-quality content if not for advertisers brought in our by our Sports Sales team, so thank you to our Sports Sales Heads Jojo Garcia, Nicole Moro and Ken Ti, along with our account executives Tin Saw, Annalyn Herrera, Trina Vallarta, Joey Tang, Karlo Miguel, Paul Sembrana, Mike Tan, Ray Del Castillo, and Jason Gaffud. Thank you to those who constantly pitched ideas and presented to clients on our behalf, our Business Development Executive, Tonyo Silva, and our Sports Marketing team made up of Thirdy Aquino, Maui Tang, Jason Roberto, Danica Jose, Lala Cruz and Hanz Trajano. Thank you to the people who looked out for the wellfare and concerns of our division members – our Human Resources squad made up of Arvin Crisol, James Lee, Anika Gregorio and Donna Yabut. Social media has been a game changer and enabled people to relive key moments in sports events, so thank you to our social media team made up of Jon Rodriguez, Alvin Laqui, Danine Cruz, Aia del Mundo, Melvin Rodas, Clev Mayuga, Migs Flores and Lloydie Moreno. We would also like to give special thanks to our former bosses and colleagues who have moved on from this world, Rolly V. Cruz, Danilo A. Bernardo, George G. Padolina, Marco Franco, Gerald Gicana, Rhodora "Dhanda" Panganiban, Vernie Calimlim and Erwin Evangelista.  Lastly, I personally want to thank the website content team made up of sub-section editors Santino Honasan, Mark “Mr. Volleyball” Escarlote, Norman Benjamin Lee Riego (Yes, it has to be his complete name) and Paul Lintag, former sub-section editor Milan Ordonez, former writer Philip Matel, videographers Nigel Velasquez, Rocio Avelino and Steph Toben, photographers Arvin Lim, Richard Esguerra and Joshua Albelda, former NBA Philippines website managing editor Adrian Dy, contributing writers Anton Roxas, Marco Benitez, “Doc Volleyball” AJ Pareja, Migs Bustos, Mikee “Diliman Legend” Reyes and Ceej Tantengco. While our journey in telling these stories with ABS-CBN Sports will abruptly come to a halt, it has been an honor and a pleasure serving the Filipino sports fans worldwide. We may no longer be around as an organization, but the great athletes will keep playing and inspiring and the games will continue. And so, with a sense of immense gratitude, we say: Maraming Salamat Kapamilya! Hanggang sa muli! --- Lorenzo Z. Manguiat has been the Editor-in-Chief of sports.abs-cbn.com since 2014 and Sports News Desk Head since 2015. He started as game writer for ABS-CBN Sports in 2000 and served in various other capacities within ABS-CBN. He is among the thousands of employees who will be retrenched on August 31, 2020.  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 31st, 2020

Built by Bo, bonded for Bo, believe in Bo

This is not the first time that Bo Perasol has had a recruiting haul this huge. Now heading into his fifth season in the University of the Philippines, he has brought in blue-chip recruits such as Gerry Abadiano and Carl Tamayo and talented transferees like Joel Cagulangan, CJ Cansino, and Malick Diouf to a team that already has Bright Akhuetie, Kobe Paras, and Ricci Rivero. And don't forget that Gomez de Liano brothers Javi and Juan are only sitting out the next season - and what lies beyond for them is yet to be determined. This is not that different from his time in Ateneo de Manila University when he scored UAAP Jrs. Season MVP Jerie Pingoy, UAAP Jrs. Finals MVP Hubert Cani, NCAA Mythical selection CJ Perez, and NCAA Jrs. standout Arvin Tolentino in his first few years. Those promising prospects then joined forces with Blue Eagle stalwarts Kiefer Ravena and Von Pessumal Unfortunately, all of Pingoy, Cani, Perez, and Tolentino - along with the rest of the so-called "Magnificent 7" - found themselves with academic deficiencies and, therefore, ineligible by the blue and white's standards. Not long after, they transferred to different schools and squads and then had varying degrees of success. Will Coach Bo's tale get a different ending this time with the Fighting Maroons? Perasol is making sure of that. "From my experience in Ateneo, natuto ako. Ngayon, meron kaming grupo sa programa na nagha-handle lang ng academics ng players," he shared. He then continued, "Sinasamahan sila sa mga klase, pinapakilala sa mga propesor, ine-explain na player natin yan, pag merong problema, coordinate lang po tayo." Apparently, this academic assistance team is made up of former student-managers who have graduated. Now, their first job is all about seeing to it that State U would not have to go through the same sort of headache Ateneo had with its "Magnificent 7." With that, you could be sure that UP's pillars of honor and excellence still stand strong even as all these new faces join Men's Basketball Team. "Walang special consideration. Pumapasok sila, bumabagsak sila. Binibigyan sila ng extra work, humihingi sila ng extra work," Coach Bo said. He then continued, "Ang ine-explain ko lagi sa players at sa professors, ang mahalaga, basta masipag pumasok at nagpapakita ng intensyong matuto." STARRING AND STRIKING At present, just about everybody is still getting used to blue-chip recruits and talented transferees going for UP. That is why there are more questions than answers each and every time they announce a new player. And along with the question of whether or not all these new faces would be up to par in terms of the honor and excellence the Philippines' prime public university prides itself in, there is a question of just how the Fighting Maroons got here in the first place. How could State U, not that far removed from its self-proclaimed "dark days," get all of these players? And not just players, at that, but many big name players. The categorical answer? The program could now afford it. "Meron nang pondo salamat sa sponsors," head coach Bo Perasol explained. "For example, kung makikita mo lang yung patches sa harap ng jersey, malaking pera yun. Nag-aagawan ang marami para dun." At present, the shot-caller said that UP has eight corporate sponsors all getting together for the funds for the program. And unlike Ateneo which has Manny V. Pangilinan or National University which has Hans Sy as primary backers, the Fighting Maroons' system is quite different. "Ang source ng funds ng UP, halos lahat galing sa alumni. Tapos lahat yun, mina-manage ng nowheretogobutUP," coach Bo said. According to its website, nowheretogobutUP (NTGBUP) is "a volunteer group of UP alumni that aims to help, assist, and support the development, improvement, and advancement of the varsity program of UP." All of the finances it manages, however, are not necessarily donations. As Perasol put it, "Yung model ng UP is unique kasi yung support nila, kailangan may balik din from us." For example, the tactician said that many of their players have made appearances, online in this continuing COVID-19 crisis and in person prior to the pandemic, to cheer up employees of Palawan Pera Padala, one of the team's sponsors. More importantly, Coach Bo reminded yet again that the only reason they have all these new faces is because they have to. He pointed out how Abadiano and Filipino-American Sam Dowd would make up for the losses of Jun Manzo and Juan GDL as well as how Diouf and Cansino are already waiting in the wings once Bright Akhuetie and Ricci Rivero graduate. "We're also recruiting for the impending need," Perasol said. "Hindi naman ito biglaan. Since nagsimula kami rito, we all did this nang dahan-dahan lang. Kaya rin yung support from alumni for funding, hindi na rin naging mahirap." DREAMING Still, the mere fact that UP is now a big-time player on and off the court in collegiate basketball seemed so farfetched just five years ago. Before Bo Perasol, the Fighting Maroons were stuck in a vicious cycle. Now, though, they have back-to-back playoff appearances and have traded blows with traditional powerhouses for recruits and transferees. All of this made possible because the very moment he came in, Coach Bo already knew the secret to success. "You cannot build a program without funds," he said. Perasol furthered that his biggest takeaway from his time in Ateneo was that competing with the traditional powerhouses on the court entailed competing with them as well off of it. "Alam ko yung kakayanan ng Ateneo and siyempre, kakumpetensya ko rin nun yung La Salle so alam ko rin yung kanila. Ganun na rin ang kakayanan ng NU and yung iba pa, kakayanin din nila kung gustuhin nila," he said. He then continued, "Kaya kung ang objective ng programa is to be in the top four, your program should be levelled din sa capacity ng top four." The General Santos native then went on to point out how training in the country or abroad, recruitment local and overseas, housing, and food and nutrition all have costs. "To sum it up, everything you're going to do would entail financing. Hindi ito kakayanin ng UP as a public school dahil wala namang pondo ang gobyerno para dyan," he said. He then continued, "Ang pinakasagot nalang ng school is yung scholarship. And siyempre, yung nag-aaral ka sa UP." That doesn't mean, however, that their hands were tied. In fact, the answer to the questions had always been there. "The good thing about UP is there's millions of alumni all over the world and a lot are successful people and businessmen who are willing to help," Perasol said. BELIEVING Indeed, having educated Filipinos for over 112 years now, UP has, without a doubt, more than a few successful alumni. It was all a matter of uniting - and then unleashing - them. Even before Bo Perasol came home to Diliman, NTGBUP was already organized. They were not necessarily thrilled with the Fighting Maroons, though. "Nung una, dahan-dahan lang, ambag-ambag lang para merong kakainin, pambayad sa dorm. Merong nag-donate ng shoes," Coach Bo said. He then continued, "Pero siyempre, they want first and foremost a program with improvements and direction." NTGBUP and the UP community got just that from Perasol as a 3-11, seventh-place finish in 2015 became a 5-9, sixth-place finish in 2016 in Coach Bo's first year. In his second year, the squad improved to a  6-8, fifth-place finish. From there, the Fighting Maroons have been in the Final Four for back-to-back years now - and even made the Finals in 2018. "Nagsimula maging excited ang alumni nung nagsimula ring manalo," he shared. "When we started winning, nagkaroon hindi lang ng physical support, but financial support as well. We were ascending eh." In his third year at the helm, State U, finally, officially had corporate sponsors. And you know how that year went? That was when they ended a 21-year Final Four drought and then a 32-year Finals absence. Safe to say, the sleeping giant was awoken. "Yes, sleeping giant talaga tayo and when we say nagising, ang pinaka-catalyst was the winning," its fearless leader said. Now, UP MBT has a mean machine of financial support on its back, paving the path for its big-time recruiting haul in 2020. Even better, they now have a loud and proud fanbase that is making up for all the lost time they stayed away during the "dark days." "Actually, sa pitches ko sa recruitment, kasama sa presentation ko yung machi-cheer sila nang ganung klaseng crowd," Coach Bo said. SURVIVING At the same time, though, that loud and proud fanbase expects much, much more from this brand new power. For each and every one of them, Bo Perasol has but one reminder. "What we have done in the past years is to level up lang. We have a new gym, we have all these players, we can train abroad," he said. He then continued, "Pero yung mga Ateneo, La Salle, 20 to 30 years na nilang ginagawa yan. What we did was just to level up alongside them." Again and again, Coach Bo has said that what he has been doing is, put simply, putting UP in the best position to win. Still, with a roster as overflowing with talent as this, he could only acknowledge that just about everybody sees them as having gone championship or bust. Credit to him, however, Perasol was blunt with his assessment that he would also be disappointed if they would not be able to taste their first championship since 1986 sooner than later. "Yes, it will be a failed plan kung hindi tayo makakakuha ng championship in the next three to five years," he said. He then continued, "Yan naman talaga ang plano and ang ginagawa natin ngayon is all going towards that objective." And again and again, he is putting all those great expectations on his shoulders - and on his shoulders alone. "Ako naman, hindi ko rin pwedeng hindi gawin itong ganitong recruitment kasi hindi rin naman ako magkakaroon ng chance kung ganun. I have to be in the best position to succeed so that we are in the best position to succeed," he said. Only time would tell if all the seeds he has sown would bear fruit. But Coach Bo is already guaranteeing that whatever happens then, he would have no regrets. "In the end, alam ko namang babalik ang lahat sa akin. Alam na alam ko namang ako ang leader ng team," he said. He then continued, "Ang mahalaga is we gave ourselves a chance. Anuman ang outcome, basta nabigyan natin ang sarili natin ng pagkakataon." After years and years and years as the laughingstock of men's basketball, it looks like it's now UP's turn to smile and wave. Whether or not that ultimately turns into jumps for joy for their first title in three decades remains to be seen. But maybe, just maybe, Coach Bo is right - this is all worth it just to have a chance to compete. Just remember that in the "dark days," that chance to compete wasn't there at all. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 30th, 2020

SEA GAMES: The silver that glittered like gold

When the editorial staff of ABS-CBN Sports was tasked to come up with our most memorable coverage, it didn’t take long for this writer to respond. The Philippine men’s volleyball team’s Southeast Asian Games semifinal match was the first thing that came to mind. Pesonally, that game against the highly-fancied Thailand squad topped all the countless volleyball matches that I’ve covered in my career. I’m at a loss for words on how to describe the emotions I felt that chilly night of December 8, 2019. Around 6,700 fans filled the PhilSports Arena in Pasig City not knowing that what they were about to witness was something historic. A magical night that would take away the frustrations they felt the day before when the more popular women’s team finished the preliminary round winless. For us sportswriters covering that assignment, we knew the Filipinos were up for a tough ride. Thailand ruled the last four editions of the event. On the other hand, the Philippines’ last significant outing in the biennial meet was a bronze medal finish back in 1991 – or when the current national team’s oldest member, setter Jessie Lopez was just five-years old.      Did we doubt our own team? Let’s just say we prayed to the high heavens to give us something positive to write about. But don’t get us wrong. Those who followed the formation and preparation of the squad knew it would yield results come the SEA Games. After all, in all three batches of the Nationals that participated in the regional sports meet since 2015, this particular team had the longest time to prepare – around eight months to be exact. The team’s composition itself looked really promising. For the first time, two of country’s best hitters in Marck Espejo and Bryan Bagunas, who both have experience playing in the Japan V. League,  donned the tricolors together. Espejo returned after skipping the 2017 edition so did his teammates in the 2015 squad Rex Intal and setter Ish Polvorosa. Bagunas was on his second tour of duty along with team captain John Vic De Guzman, Mark Alfafara, RanRan Abdilla and libero Jack Kalingking. Head coach Dante Alinsunurin, who was appointed to handle the team after Oliver Almadro and Sammy Acaylar in 2015 and 2017, respectively, tapped an old hand in Lopez and injected young bloods in playmaker Owa Retamar, Jau Umandal, Kim Malabunga, Ricky Marcos and Francis Saura. As part of their buildup the Nationals joined the Thailand Open Sealect Tuna Championship July last year.          The Filipinos achieved a great feat when they won bronze. Fans were able to witness the Nationals’ campaign via YouTube streaming while we volleyball writers, got to file our full stories through the help of De Guzman and Bagunas (God bless their beautiful hearts) who supplied us with game stats and granted postgame interviews. It’s just a shame I never got to cover the team’s training in Japan when the Nationals’ preparation went on full throttle. (Note: A little confusion in the training camp coverage assignments had me flying to Japan with the women’s squad and Lance Agcaoili of Spin.ph joining the men’s team. But it was a great experience, nonetheless, and I’m grateful for Larong Volleyball sa Pilipinas, Inc. for the opportunity.)     I was as confused as the other sportswriters present during the draw for the group stage a couple of months before the SEA Games when Alinsunurin chose to join the four-team bracket with Indonesia, Vietnam and Cambodia. Those three teams are considered contenders every SEA Games edition. And earning a semifinal spot would be harder compared to the other group composed of Thailand, Myanmar and Singapore. Fortunately, the gamble was worth it. Espejo and Bagunas were superb offensively, Malabunga and Retamar made their presence felt and the Nationals’ blocking shocked Cambodia and Vietnam as the Filipinos swept them both to secure a semis seat.   Then came the steamrolling Indonesians. Honestly, I thought the Nationals would sweep their way to the group’s top seeding. That way the PHI’s would've avoided a semis clash with Thailand. Forced to take on the defending champions, the Filipinos found themselves down in the first set. They got back in the second frame before yielding the third. And when the Thais came to match point, 24-21, in the fourth we all thought it was over. Fans were slowly emptying the bleachers not wanting to see the impending defeat. I was already waiting for the final score. Ready break the result. Then a miracle happened. The Nationals nibbled on the Thais' lead to force a deuce. After another deadlock, the Filipinos stole the set. The fifth frame was classic story of ‘who wants it more will win.’ An extended set made it even more dramatic. I vividly remember that sequence when Bagunas hammered the game-clinching kill off a lob from Lopez. After that all that I can recall was me pumping my fist up in the air and slapping the hardest high-fives I ever did with those inside the press room while howling like a madman.    The national team assured itself of a silver after 42 years. A silver after four freaking decades. They did it. Of course, the Indonesians bullied their way to winning the gold medal in a sweep of the inexperienced Filipinos. But who cares, the host team exceeded its podium expectations. That silver that glittered like gold made that coverage truly memorable. But it never crossed my mind that it would be the last important volleyball event that I will get to report. (Note: It would’ve been the UAAP if not for the health crisis that put all sporting events to a halt. Sad.) And that’s why I ended up writing these last few paragraphs. A farewell from this section. From my first article for this website back on December 1, 2014 – a post-mortem of Petron’s breakthrough title in the Philippine Superliga Grand Prix – to my last published story, these were all written with only one thing in mind: in the service of the Filipino sports fan worldwide. Our run may have not been perfect, of course, we had our flaws. We had our fair share of criticisms from fans, athletes, sports personalities and sometimes even from our partner leagues and properties. We accepted our shortcomings. We tried to be better. But we are proud of what we did. We take pride with how we delivered sports stories through various digital executions that showcased sports beyond the confines of competition. On midnight of September 1 while most of you lay sound asleep, deep in slumber, hopefully, having a good dream and hours away from waking up looking forward to a better day, this website will be snapped out of existence.  More than half a decade of sharing stories to the Filipino sports fan will be seeing its last presence online on Monday – a holiday to celebrate the nation’s heroes. This website will then hear its final buzzer, its final whistle. Thousands of articles – written with passion, dedication and love – will be taken down as this website goes offline together with majority of ABS-CBN Sports’ social media accounts. But soon, hopefully, it will once again see the light of day.    We do hope that you will remember us, for we will remember all of you who made us your Kapamilya.   -- 30 --   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles Mark Escarlote has served as a sub-section editor for ABS-CBN Sports' website since 2014. He is among thousands of ABS-CBN employees who will be retrenched on August 31, 2020.   .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 29th, 2020

UAAP 81: When the sleeping giant named UP finally awakened

No cheering - that's the cardinal rule for sportswriters during coverages. In collegiate sports, not even your very own alma mater song is spared. Still, on November 28, 2018, I thought this one time could be an exception to the rule. After all, more than half of the Araneta Coliseum had their hands raised in singing "UP Naming Mahal." Certainly, not one more fist in the air could be considered conspicuous. After all, the University of the Philippines Men's Basketball Team was letting it all out right there on the court. Certainly, not one more show of emotion could be out of place. And after all, the Fighting Maroons had just done it. It, being seeing a new dawn after the so-called dark days. FROM FIGHTING TO WINNING UAAP 81 started very much like how many, many UP seasons did in recent memory. There was a lot of hope, no doubt, what with Paul Desiderio in his last year, Bright Akhuetie in his first year, Gomez de Liano brothers Juan and Javi being back for more, and Bo Perasol still at the helm. Only, being a fan of the Fighting Maroons also meant you know full well all of it couldn't be true. History is a lesson to be learned - and from the promise of Migs De Asis, Mike Gamboa, Martin Reyes, and great Filipino-American hope Mike Silungan and the potential of Mikee Reyes, Woody Co, and Kyles Lao, Diliman has learned many, many lessons, indeed. And then, the season started. A season-opening win became a 1-3 standing. A 3-3 record worsened to 3-5. Standing at an even 5-5 in the stretch run then led to winning three of the last four games in the elimination round. And before you knew it, UP, yes, UP was knocking on the door of the Final Four. Could this be it? Or could this be just the biggest disappointment the Fighting Maroons had ever served? FROM WINNING TO LOSING A winning tradition could be taken for granted. Coming from a school down south that was, is, and forever linked to a particular powerhouse, I, personally, was very much used to winning. Even more, I was right there when Joshua (or Dave, as we called him) Webb, Jeric Fortuna, and Jed Manguera led the team formerly known as the Bengals to a breakthrough championship. So, yeah, personally, my tradition was to root for a winning team - be it in the Jrs. or in the Srs. Come college, though, I traded in the shield of green and white for the luntian at pulang sagisag magpakailanman. And hey, UP Diliman is and always will be the best school in the history of man, in my eyes. In terms of basketball, though, it left much to be desired. As I was about to go to college, the Fighting Maroons went winless in back-to-back years. And then, they had three-win seasons when I was a freshie and a sophomore. In all my four years in college, I only experienced eight wins out of 56. So yeah, in State U, there was the exact opposite of a winning tradition. (EDITOR'S NOTE: Don't get me wrong here. UP is a power in many, many sports and is a contender for the general championship year in and year out. Back then, though, forgive me if I only had eyes for men's basketball.) FROM JETT TO PAUL And then, a ray of light shone bright, and brighter, and brighter. I have now grown to love Mikee Reyes - he is a great guy and a good analyst. Back then, though, he was a prime proof of what wasn't working in UP. Here was a talent who had a shot at making a name for himself and taking his team along with him for the ride, but unfortunately, just could not put it all together. Reyes was just one of many, many promising players in maroon and green who didn't have the sort of support that a winning tradition entailed. True to their name, though, the Fighting Maroons kept, well, fighting. And in his last year, Jett Manuel proved that the tides could turn in their favor. Manuel would never be the best player on De La Salle University or Ateneo de Manila University or even University of Sto. Tomas and Far Eastern University. Still, he gave his all game in and game out and grew to be a beloved player and leader in Diliman. He set the standard for the kind of fight a Maroon should have and in his last year, steered his squad to a fifth-place finish at 5-9. Not a finish to be proud of by any means, but for the first time in a long time, there were signs of life coming from State U. And that's when I knew Jett Manuel would be my forever King Maroon. However, just two years later, Paul Desiderio made me question that. FROM THEN TO NOW Definitely, Paul Desiderio is not Jett Manuel. Jett is eloquent and looks like he came from an exclusive private school, which he did. Paul speaks in short but sweet terms and is very much proud of his roots in Cebu. What they both have, though, is an undeniable love for UP and an unwavering determination to lead the Fighting Maroons to where they belong. When Manuel left, of course, the reins went to Desiderio and in his very first game as main man, he proved his worth. I know you know what I'm going to talk about - because this was the time he uttered the words that would define State U from that point onto the foreseeable future. "Atin to, papasok to!" -- Paul Desiderio during the timeout. Moments later...#UAAPSeason80 pic.twitter.com/7yafSpldJM — ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) September 10, 2017 The maroon and green yet again fell short of the Final Four that year, but come next season, a playoff berth was, indeed, theirs for the taking. Downing La Salle in the very last game of the elims, they booked a trip to the next round for the first time since 1997. That would have been more than enough for their long-suffering faithful, but they did themselves one better - actually, two better - and upset second-seed and twice-to-beat Adamson University. Just like that, UP would be playing in its first Finals since the days of Benjie Paras, Ronnie Magsanoc, Eric Altamirano, and Joe Lipa. That day, November 28, 2018, would always live on with me. FROM ME TO YOU As bad as I wanted to break the cardinal rule for sportswriters, I didn't. As bad as I wanted to stay on the floor to listen and live in the chorus singing in harmony, "Mabuhay ang pag-asa ng bayan," I couldn't. When UP made history, I had to go back to the press room and finish my full take on the game. Just minutes before, I honestly couldn't believe the breaking report I was working on in my phone and uploading in our website. Really? The Fighting Maroons had done it. Even with the final stat sheet in my hands, I still couldn't believe it. Really? The Fighting Maroons had done it. Even through writing "those back-to-back wins have set up for them a date with defending champion Ateneo de Manila University in the best-of-three Finals slated for Saturday at the MOA Arena," I still couldn't believe it. Really? The Fighting Maroons had done it. Of course, in the very end, Ateneo was Ateneo and State U had to settle for second-place. Still, there may not be another silver medal that was worth celebrating more. You have to understand that again, this is a team not that far off from its dark days - so, yeah, this silver season was a special season. And so, at the very end of Season 81, when I saw Paul standing on the game officials' table, basking in the UP community's cries of "De-si-de-rio" and "A-tin-to," another chant was playing in my head - "You deserve it." This image, would always live on with me. At the same time, though, I was a firsthand witness to another image that told me this was just the beginning. First Finals appearance, first Finals loss. Fo sho, GDL brothers @javigdl22 and @juan_swish9 will only be better from this. #UAAPSeason81 pic.twitter.com/CMV0JH30rh — No Work Normie Riego (@riegogogo) December 5, 2018 Juan and Javi GDL sat on the makeshift awarding stage while the Blue Eagles were enjoying their back-to-back championships and Desiderio was being serenaded by the Fighting Maroons' faithful. Their eyes were welling up with tears, but deep down there, you could also see their determination to be back, to be better, and to say themselves "Atin 'to" to a championship. FROM HERE ON OUT UAAP 81 was Ateneo's, no doubt about that. UAAP 82, when UP was supposedly stronger, was still Ateneo's, yet again no doubt about that. Actually, the Fighting Maroons were even owned by runner-up UST that year - and those Growling Tigers had a Cinderella tale to tell of their own. And yet, for my money, no team in recent memory has won over everybody quite like Paul Desiderio's UP Fighting Maroons. Maybe, just maybe, that's all because I'm an Isko with student no. 2008-6*1*5. Or maybe, just maybe, it's so good to see a sleeping giant awakened - now knowledgeable of how to build a team and now knowledgeable how to put up support for that team. Or maybe, just maybe, it's so good to see homegrown stars like Diego Dario and the GDLs stay home and play home and to see a foreign student-athlete like Akhuetie shine bright both as a student and as an athlete. Or maybe, just maybe, it's so good to put your full faith in somebody like Desiderio who truly, madly, and deeply believed "Atin 'to" - even though recent history said otherwise. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo. Norman Lee Benjamin Riego has served as a sub-section editor for ABS-CBN Sports' website since 2014. He is among thousands of ABS-CBN employees who will be retrenched on August 31, 2020. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 28th, 2020

SEA GAMES: The silver that glittered like gold

When the editorial staff of ABS-CBN Sports was tasked to come up with our most memorable coverage, it didn’t take long for this writer to respond. The Philippine men’s volleyball team’s Southeast Asian Games semifinal match was the first thing that came to mind. Pesonally, that game against the highly-fancied Thailand squad topped all the countless volleyball matches that I’ve covered in my career. I’m at a loss for words on how to describe the emotions I felt that chilly night of December 8, 2019. Around 6,700 fans filled the PhilSports Arena in Pasig City not knowing that what they were about to witness was something historic. A magical night that would take away the frustrations they felt the day before when the more popular women’s team finished the preliminary round winless. For us sportswriters covering that assignment, we knew the Filipinos were up for a tough ride. Thailand ruled the last four editions of the event. On the other hand, the Philippines’ last significant outing in the biennial meet was a bronze medal finish back in 1991 – or when the current national team’s oldest member, setter Jessie Lopez was just five-years old.      Did we doubt our own team? Let’s just say we prayed to the high heavens to give us something positive to write about. But don’t get us wrong. Those who followed the formation and preparation of the squad knew it would yield results come the SEA Games. After all, in all three batches of the Nationals that participated in the regional sports meet since 2015, this particular team had the longest time to prepare – around eight months to be exact. The team’s composition itself looked really promising. For the first time, two of country’s best hitters in Marck Espejo and Bryan Bagunas, who both have experience playing in the Japan V. League,  donned the tricolors together. Espejo returned after skipping the 2017 edition so did his teammates in the 2015 squad Rex Intal and setter Ish Polvorosa. Bagunas was on his second tour of duty along with team captain John Vic De Guzman, Mark Alfafara, RanRan Abdilla and libero Jack Kalingking. Head coach Dante Alinsunurin, who was appointed to handle the team after Oliver Almadro and Sammy Acaylar in 2015 and 2017, respectively, tapped an old hand in Lopez and injected young bloods in playmaker Owa Retamar, Jau Umandal, Kim Malabunga, Ricky Marcos and Francis Saura. As part of their buildup the Nationals joined the Thailand Open Sealect Tuna Championship July last year.          The Filipinos achieved a great feat when they won bronze. Fans were able to witness the Nationals’ campaign via YouTube streaming while we volleyball writers, got to file our full stories through the help of De Guzman and Bagunas (God bless their beautiful hearts) who supplied us with game stats and granted postgame interviews. It’s just a shame I never got to cover the team’s training in Japan when the Nationals’ preparation went on full throttle. (Note: A little confusion in the training camp coverage assignments had me flying to Japan with the women’s squad and Lance Agcaoili of Spin.ph joining the men’s team. But it was a great experience, nonetheless, and I’m grateful for Larong Volleyball sa Pilipinas, Inc. for the opportunity.)     I was as confused as the other sportswriters present during the draw for the group stage a couple of months before the SEA Games when Alinsunurin chose to join the four-team bracket with Indonesia, Vietnam and Cambodia. Those three teams are considered contenders every SEA Games edition. And earning a semifinal spot would be harder compared to the other group composed of Thailand, Myanmar and Singapore. Fortunately, the gamble was worth it. Espejo and Bagunas were superb offensively, Malabunga and Retamar made their presence felt and the Nationals’ blocking shocked Cambodia and Vietnam as the Filipinos swept them both to secure a semis seat.   Then came the steamrolling Indonesians. Honestly, I thought the Nationals would sweep their way to the group’s top seeding. That way the PHI’s would've avoided a semis clash with Thailand. Forced to take on the defending champions, the Filipinos found themselves down in the first set. They got back in the second frame before yielding the third. And when the Thais came to match point, 24-21, in the fourth we all thought it was over. Fans were slowly emptying the bleachers not wanting to see the impending defeat. I was already waiting for the final score. Ready break the result. Then a miracle happened. The Nationals nibbled on the Thais' lead to force a deuce. After another deadlock, the Filipinos stole the set. The fifth frame was classic story of ‘who wants it more will win.’ An extended set made it even more dramatic. I vividly remember that sequence when Bagunas hammered the game-clinching kill off a lob from Lopez. After that all that I can recall was me pumping my fist up in the air and slapping the hardest high-fives I ever did with those inside the press room while howling like a madman.    The national team assured itself of a silver after 42 years. A silver after four freaking decades. They did it. Of course, the Indonesians bullied their way to winning the gold medal in a sweep of the inexperienced Filipinos. But who cares, the host team exceeded its podium expectations. That silver that glittered like gold made that coverage truly memorable. But it never crossed my mind that it would be the last important volleyball event that I will get to report. (Note: It would’ve been the UAAP if not for the health crisis that put all sporting events to a halt. Sad.) And that’s why I ended up writing these last few paragraphs. A farewell from this section. From my first article for this website back on December 1, 2014 – a post-mortem of Petron’s breakthrough title in the Philippine Superliga Grand Prix – to my last published story, these were all written with only one thing in mind: in the service of the Filipino sports fan worldwide. Our run may have not been perfect, of course, we had our flaws. We had our fair share of criticisms from fans, athletes, sports personalities and sometimes even from our partner leagues and properties. We accepted our shortcomings. We tried to be better. But we are proud of what we did. We take pride with how we delivered sports stories through various digital executions that showcased sports beyond the confines of competition. On midnight of September 1 while most of you lay sound asleep, deep in slumber, hopefully, having a good dream and hours away from waking up looking forward to a better day, this website will be snapped out of existence.  More than half a decade of sharing stories to the Filipino sports fan will be seeing its last presence online on Monday – a holiday to celebrate the nation’s heroes. This website will then hear its final buzzer, its final whistle. Thousands of articles – written with passion, dedication and love – will be taken down as this website goes offline together with majority of ABS-CBN Sports’ social media accounts. But soon, hopefully, it will once again see the light of day.    We do hope that you will remember us, for we will remember all of you who made us your Kapamilya.   -- 30 --   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles Mark Escarlote has served as a sub-section editor for ABS-CBN Sports' website since 2014. He is among thousands of ABS-CBN employees who will be retrenched on August 31, 2020.   .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 28th, 2020

Filipino artists dedicate murals to Kobe Bryant during Mamba Week

Nike Philippines honored the legacy of Kobe Bryant (1978 – 2020) with Mamba Week from August 23 by bringing together athletes, communities, inspiration and innovation which commemorated his enduring legacy and transcendent Mamba Mentality.  In another chapter of the Mamba Week tribute, Nike teamed up with ARAL Cru, a local graffiti trio from the community, to dedicate two murals around Metro Manila celebrating Kobe Bryant, his legacy and Mamba Mentality.  Marking the Black Mamba’s Last Historic Visit (in Araneta City) The first mural that ARAL Cru created directly faces the historic Araneta Coliseum, the venue where Kobe Bryant made his last appearance in Manila.                                                            Araneta City, Philippines The portrait of Kobe on the right side of the artwork is derived from a photo of him smiling during his last visit to the coliseum. This mural depicts imagery of fearlessness and focus, and a color scheme that resembles a sunset, which sets a tone of thankfulness for a good Kobe day that had passed. A New Day Dawning (at EDSA-Kalayaan) ARAL Cru relocated to Makai City to paint the second mural a few hours later. Symbolizing the sunrise and the beginning of a new day, this mural uses the same colors as the first but moving towards the opposite direction.                                                            EDSA-Kalayaan The mural depicts Kobe wearing his two iconic jersey numbers, 8 and 24, shooting crumpled pieces of paper into a trash bin. An optimistic way of showing the moment when we are reminded to be a little better each time the sun rises, just like Kobe. Throughout his career he evolved both as a person and as an athlete, he was always the one you could reliably turn to when the game is on the line.  Behind the Art (About ARAL Cru) ARAL Cru consists of Bvdot, Cinos, and Frank, a three-man graffiti crew from the Greater Manila Area. Through street painting and gallery work across Philippines, they are today recognized as one the most respected young talents in the street art movement in the country. Hard work, quality of execution, the ability to work under pressure, and of course, love for the game— this is how the ARAL Cru artists truly embody Mamba Mentality in their own lives. Kayo Cosio of #HoneycombArts organized and curated this project. #HoneycombArts is an organization that connects culture and messaging through a variety of public art mediums. They have also curated and executed over 60 public art projects in Manila and abroad......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 28th, 2020

2020 king of recruiting crown remains on UP’s head

Who was our King of Recruiting in 2018? Find out here. Who was our King of Recruiting in 2019? Find out here. --- From 2007 to 2015, the University of the Philippines only had 13 wins to show in 126 games total. That time is self-deprecatingly called in Diliman as the dark days. Due to that disappointing standing, the Fighting Maroons had the toughest time bringing in recruits. And due to that lack of pieces to the puzzles, they lost even more. Safe to say, State U was stuck in a vicious cycle in the dark days. That’s not to say they didn’t have blue-chip recruits back then as in their time, all of Woody Co, Mark Juruena, Mike Gamboa, Kyles Lao, Jett Manuel, and Mikee Reyes were among the best high school players. Only, a blue-chip recruit or two does not make a team. Fast forward to now and oh, how things have changed. Last year, UP was hailed as ABS-CBN’s King of Recruiting alongside University of the East. “On the strength of the transfers of Kobe Paras and Ricci Rivero, the Fighting Maroons… are worthy of the title,” it said then. And the season before that, the maroon and green was also up there with the best of them in terms of recruitment, having brought in the likes of eventual Season MVP Bright Akhuetie, Will Gozum, and Jaydee Tungcab. Indeed, there was nowhere to go but up. That has only continued this year as UP has left no doubt that it is now a force to reckon with in terms of recruitment. Early on, they already had a solid haul in Joel Cagulangan, once the best point guard in high school, and tireless workhorse Malick Diouf. And then, the shock of shocks. As it turned out, Nazareth School of National University stalwarts Carl Tamayo and Gerry Abadiano were going to be Fighting Maroons. Meaning, for the first time in recent history, the most promising prospect coming out of high school is headed to Diliman. Not only that, State U also answered its biggest question heading into next season – the question at point guard, filling in for Jun Manzo. But as it turned out, they weren’t done just yet - no, our friends, they weren’t done just yet. Tamayo and Abadiano’s departure from National U was shocking, without a doubt, but CJ Cansino’s exit from University of Sto. Tomas was even more so. Cansino, against his will, decided to move on from his alma mater since 2015 due to personal reasons. Fortunately for him, he landed on his feet. Now, the Fighting Maroons have ready-made replacement for Rivero as well as a leader in the shades of Paul Desiderio for UAAP 84. And that, our friends, is why we have no choice but to put the 2020 King of Recruiting crown on UP’s head once more. Tamayo and Abadiano are the bluest of blue-chip recruits this year and Cagulangan, Cansino, and Diouf are among the most talented transferees, but also joining them in the maroon and green will be scoring machine RC Calimag from La Salle Green Hills, burly big Miguel Tan from Xavier High School, Filipino-American playmaker Sam Dowd, Filipino-Australian tower Ethan Kirkness, physical forward Jancork Cabahug from University of Visayas, and versatile wing CJ Catapusan from Adamson University. The former Bullpups are guaranteed ato be contributors even as rookies while Calimag, Tan, and Dowd are going to shore up a bench that had just lost Gomez de Liano brothers Javi and Juan. Of course, Diouf, Kirkness, Cansino, Cabahug, and Cagulangan are still serving residency, but when they will be eligible, they will get a shot at a squad that will look brand new. All of Bright Akhuetie, J-Boy Gob, David Murrell, Noah Webb, and Rivero are graduating players while Paras is only guaranteed to play one more year. That means that after Season 83, the Fighting Maroons may very well have to fill six spots. That means that UP is not only beefing up for UAAP 83, it is also securing its future. If not for the shock of shocks, though, the crown would have been claimed by De La Salle University which sent a statement that it is back and better than ever. Justine Baltazar and Aljun Melecio may be playing their fifth and final years in college, but the green and white’s future has only brightened following this prolonged preseason. First and foremost, Kevin Quiambao, the third leg in that National U tripod of talent out of high school, has the capability and confidence to follow in the footsteps of Baltazar. Hopefully, he will be eligible for Season 83, but if not, what’s certain is he will be playing in UAAP 84. Alongside him as pieces for the future are super scorers CJ Austria and Emman Galman, all-around swingman Joshua Ramirez, and Filipino-Americans Jeromy Hughes, Kameron Vales, and Philips bros. Benjamin and Michael. Among all those, Jonnel Policarpio, likened to a young Arwind Santos, has the highest upside, but the Fil-Ams have much potential as well. And don’t forget that Evan Nelle, the primetime playmaker from San Beda University, is just getting primed and prepped to take the reins when Melecio leaves. Of course, the caveat here is that we are all in uncharted territory due to the continuing COVID-19 crisis. And in that light, the next season of the UAAP remains far away and a lot could still happen until then. While majority of the local blue-chip recruits have already committed, talents from abroad and transferees from other schools could still come and change the game. With that being said, there remains no doubt that UP and La Salle have made the biggest noise in the offseason. However, it’s not actually the Fighting Maroons or the Green Archers who got the lion’s share of the best graduating players in the 2020 NBTC 24. Yes, that honor belongs to Lyceum of the Philippines University which is finally reaping the rewards of its rising Jrs. program with NCAA 95 Jrs. MVP John Barba and Batang Gilas playmaker Mac Guadana being promoted as full-fledged Pirates. Guadana could do it all and looks like the next great guard in the Grand Old League while fearless slasher is Barba is a perfect complement to him. Add another fiery guard in John Bravo and sweet-shooting big man Carlo Abadeza and LPU has restocked its coffers after losing Marcelino twins Jaycee and Jayvee and Cameroonian powerhouse Mike Nzeusseu. In all though, the 2020 NBTC 24 was dominated by UP… and San Beda. Of the annual rankings’ 15 graduating players, four would be Fighting Maroons and another four would be Red Lions. Yes, San Beda’s grassroots program is back on track with its Jrs. championship core all remaining in red and white. Rhayyan Amsali, ranked no. 1 in the 2020 NBTC 24, is the most college-ready high school player while Justine Sanchez is a long-limbed forward who could turn out to be the next Calvin Oftana, you know, the NCAA 95 MVP. Yukien Andrada, meanwhile, is only continuing to develop his two-way game and Tony Ynot is a 3-and-D weapon who had even left an impression on Jalen Green. And hey, as somebody said, don’t sleep on the UAAP’s three-time defending champions. Ateneo may already be missing Isaac Go, Thirdy Ravena, Adrian Wong, and Nieto twins Mike and Matt and they may not be making noise as of late, but they are still welcoming Dave Ildefonso and Dwight Ramos with open arms. Ildefonso will only be good to go come UAAP 84, but Ramos is already being seen by head coach Tab Baldwin as a difference-maker for the Blue Eagles in Season 83. Eli, Dwight’s younger brother, is also in the mix to backstop SJ Belangel and Tyler Tio. Note also that former blue-chip recruit Inand Fornilos may very well finally get his shot while both Jolo Mendoza and Raffy Verano are also back. Ateneo’s foe in the Finals last year also reloaded quite a bit as for the third year in a row, UST will be sending the Tiger Cubs’ best player to the Srs. squad. Following in the footsteps of Cansino and Mark Nonoy, post player Bismarck Lina will be a Growling Tiger next season. Alongside him to fortify the frontcourt are Christian Manaytay, Bryan Samudio, and Bryan Santos while bolstering the backcourt are Joshua Fontanilla and Paul Manalang. Speaking of fortifying the frontcourt, Far Eastern University is the team that got the biggest boost in terms of size. With 6-foot-7 Nigerian Emman Ojoula’s residency over and done with, the go-go guards of the Tamaraws have yet another weapon to burn opponents with. CESAFI MVP Kevin Guibao and transferee Simone Sandagon are no slouches either while Cholo Anonuevo has a roster spot waiting for him if and when he decides to come home after trying his luck in the US. RJ Abarrientos no longer appears here as he was already in FEU’s list last year. These are the new faces to see for the other teams: CSB Blazers LETRAN Knights JRU Heavy Bombers MAPUA Cardinals ADAMSON Soaring Falcons UE Red Warriors --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 26th, 2020

62-year-old OFW is Daanbantayan’s latest COVID-19 case

CEBU CITY, Philippines — The municipality of Daanbantayan reported one new infection of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) this Wednesday, August 26, 2020. The newest case in the northernmost town is a 62-year-old overseas Filipino worker (OFW) from Barangay Poblacion. He is the town’s 55th case. According to the bulletin posted by the local government unit, […] The post 62-year-old OFW is Daanbantayan’s latest COVID-19 case appeared first on Cebu Daily News......»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsAug 26th, 2020

No days off for Jalen, Kai, and the rest of the G League tea

The G League Select Team is filled with top prospects all trying to make the jump to the NBA. Top 2020 recruit Jalen Green leads the list along with other five-star prospects like Isaiah Todd and Daishen Nix. Of course, 7'2" Filipino teen phenom Kai Sotto is also on the team, and he will try to make history by becoming the first homegrown talent to play in the NBA. As these youngsters all below the age of 20 prepare for the pro life, one thing is for certain: no days off for all of them from now on. "Before the season starts, I expect everyone to come to the gym everyday and just work their butts off. These elite players that chose this route all have one goal and that's to make it to the NBA, and so there can't be no slacking, no days off, none of that," guard Jalen Green said in an interview set up by NBA Philippines. "At the same time, we gotta build chemistry because if we do get the chance to get on that floor and play, we gotta be on the same page so we can win," he added. All players in the Select Team will be using the G League as a springboard to get to the NBA. Save for actually playing for one of the 32 NBA teams, this is the closest they could get to the Association right now. The G League will be a crucial part to their development and having each other's back will be a key factor as they all try to move forward. "I think we all could play a part in helping each other," Green said. "We step into practice and get ready, we all have to compete and play hard against each other, that's the only way we can get better. We have all the tools in our backyard to learn so we just gotta use it to our advantage," Jalen added.   — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 16th, 2020

Fil-Am MMA fighter Mark Striegl officially announces UFC signing

It's official.  The Philippines will once again be represented inside the UFC Octagon after the signing of Filipino-American MMA fighter Mark "Mugen" Streigl.  A day after reports surfaced that Striegl was UFC-bound, he himself confirmed the news on his Instagram account.          View this post on Instagram                   Today I signed with the @ufc! A dream come true. I will be fighting on August 22nd in Las Vegas. Thank you @rubyse! Let’s go! ?????????????? A post shared by Mark "Mugen" Striegl (@markmugen) on Aug 12, 2020 at 11:36pm PDT "Today I signed with the UFC! A dream come true. I will be fighting on August 22nd in Las Vegas," Striegl announced.  The 32-year old Baguio-born Striegl, who had stints with PXC, ONE Championship, and was the URCC's Featherweight Champion, is reportedly set to face fellow newcomer Timur Valiev of Russia on the undercard of UFC Fight Night: Munhoz vs. Edgar at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada on August 22nd (August 23rd in Manila). .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 14th, 2020

Jalen Green on Kai Sotto: 'We re bros off the court'

Kai Sotto is not the only Filipino that will play in the NBA G League Select Team. Sotto will partner up with top 2020 prospect Jalen Green, the Fil-Am star who was actually the first to commit to the brand-new G League program. In the G League, Green is excited to finally play with Kai as they both look to properly represent the Philippines as a proud basketball nation all while trying to chase their respective NBA dreams. "Me and Kai have good relationship," Jalen said of Sotto in an interview set up by NBA Philippines.  "I talked to him a couple of times in the Philippines. We were playing against each other so I didn't really get to talk to him that much. But he knows that we're bros off the court," he added. Kai and Jalen have had their battles on the court in the last couple of years, seeing each other for tournaments organized by the NBTC in Manila. Now both in the US, Jalen is looking forward to once again sharing the court with Sotto, this time as teammates. "When he came to the G League I told him, 'Congrats, can't wait to be your teammate,'" Green said. "I'm excited to play with him and represent the Philippines," Jalen added.   — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 13th, 2020

Jalen Green to Gilas Pilipinas? 'It could be a possibility,' says Fil-Am star

Jalen Green to Gilas Pilipinas is a tantalizing thought, that's for sure. It's not entirely impossible, after all, the no. 1 recruit of the 2020 class and a projected top NBA Draft pick has Filipino blood through his mother side. There's only one major hurdle in the Green to Gilas dream: young Jalen has already played, and won FIBA gold medals, for Team USA. FIBA rules state that a player who has played in official competition "after having reached his seventeenth (17) birthday may not play for a national team of another country." It would take "exceptional circumstances" to have Green leave Team USA and instead play for Gilas Pilipinas. Nevertheless, the 17-year-old Jalen remains open to play for the Philippines, if there's even a slight chance it could be a reality. "I could be a possibility," Green said in an interview set up by NBA Philippines. "I've been to the Philippines twice in the last four years and I've been asked that question over how many times. It could be a possibility, I don't really know at this time. I have played for USA, so I'm not sure. It could happen, only time will tell at this point," he added. Not exactly busy with national team duties nowadays, Green says his focus is on the G League. The goal is to make the NBA of course. "Obviously, my end goal is to make it to the NBA," Green said. "I thought what better way than go to the G League and be around pros, get pro training, pro nutrition, all that. It's just another level of training and getting better and learning the game," Jalen added.   — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 13th, 2020

SM Prime income halved in H1 due to impact of pandemic

SM Prime Holdings Inc., one of the leading integrated property developers in Southeast Asia, posted a 46 percent drop in consolidated net income to P10.4 billion in the first half of 2020 from P19.3 billion in the same period last year. In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange, SM Prime said its consolidated revenue for the first six months of 2020 registered a 23 percent decline to P43.7 billion from P57.0 billion in the first six months of 2019. SM Prime said it continues to innovate and strategize to recover from the unprecedented effects of the pandemic brought about by Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) including continuous support in the operations of tenants as well as assistance to various stakeholders across the country. “The first half of 2020 has been one of the most challenging periods we’ve faced as a company. With the government maintaining the implementation of quarantine protocols in most key areas in the Philippines where our businesses are, SM Prime is committed to sustaining its operations while adhering to the strict safety measures implemented by the government and continue providing convenience to our customers,” said SM Prime President Jeffrey C. Lim. SM Prime’s Philippine malls’ rent income dropped by 44 percent to P13.1 billion in the first half of 2020 from last year’s P23.3 billion on the back of lower mall revenue of P14.4 billion, 49 percent lower from P28.1 billion of the same period last year. This is driven primarily by waived rent and rental discounts granted to tenants since the start of the quarantine measures in March, which amounted to P11 billion as of end of June. SM Prime’s residential business, led by SM Development Corporation (SMDC), recorded P23.7 billion revenue in the first half of 2020, 11 percent higher from P21.4 billion in the same period last year. This accounts for 54 percent of the consolidated revenue of the Company. SMDC generated P42.4 billion reservation sales in the first six months of 2020, amidst the quarantine measures. SM Prime’s commercial properties business’ revenue has grown 16 percent to P2.5 billion in the first half of 2020. Operating income registered at PHP2.2 billion, 22 percent higher than P1.8 billion during the first half of the previous year. The offices business of SM Prime has business process outsourcing (BPO) offices as primary tenants, which were allowed by the Philippine’s Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) to continue its operations throughout the quarantine period. The hotels and convention centers business segment contributed P1 billion to consolidated revenues in the first half of 2020 despite limited operations. Conrad Manila, Park Inn Clark, Park Inn North EDSA and Park Inn Iloilo remained operational to cater to BPO employees and returning overseas Filipino workers/seafarers. The Company’s biggest events center, the Mall of Asia Arena, on the other hand, was converted into Mega Swabbing Facility in partnership with various government agencies to help front- liners as well as returning overseas workers. “The Company is doing its part to help the country to contain the spread of the virus. For our employees and agency workers, we have conducted antibody rapid testing and RT- PCR testing during the start of GCQ in the country to assure the safety and uninterrupted delivery of services to customers and to protect its workforce,”Lim added......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 3rd, 2020

Rodtang retains title in ONE Championship’s return to action

31 July 2020 – Bangkok, Thailand: The largest global sports media property in Asian history, ONE Championship™ (ONE), made a successful return to its flagship event schedule, starting off with ONE: NO SURRENDER last Friday night, 31 July in Bangkok. The event was broadcast live around the world from a closed-door, audience-free venue. Once again, the absolute best in local and international martial arts talent showcased their skills in the ONE Championship ring. In the main event, reigning and defending ONE Flyweight Muay Thai World Champion Rodtang “The Iron Man” Jitmuangnon successfully defended his title against former ONE Flyweight Kickboxing World Champion “The Baby Shark” Petchdam Petchyindee Academy after five action-packed rounds. Petchdam established his jab early in the first round, setting up his vaunted left kick. Rodtang was slow to start, as he instead opted to get reads on his opponent from a distance. Rodtang turned up the pressure towards the end of the second round, hunting Petchdam with his trademark boxing combinations and thunderous elbows. In the third round, Rodtang began walking Petchdam down with his punches. The champion caught Petchdam with a left hook, testing the challenger’s chin on wobbly legs, but the latter recovered well. In the fourth round, Rodtang resumed his onslaught, rolling forward like a tank as Petchdam fired away with kicks to the body. In the fifth round, Petchdam again found success with his left roundhouse kick, but it wasn’t enough to thwart Rodtang’s forward pressure. After five fiery rounds, two of three judges scored the bout in favor of Rodtang to win by majority decision, who retaind his title. Reigning ONE Featherweight Muay Thai World Champion Petchmorakot Petchyindee Academy turned in perhaps the most important victory of his career, outlasting legendary Thai striker “The Boxing Computer” Yodsanklai IWE Fairtex to retain his title in the co-main event. The first round saw the legendary Yodsanklai connect on his patented triple uppercut, while Petchmorakot tried to shake off the cobwebs. Petchmorakot upped the aggression in the second round, catching Yodsanklai’s kick as he uncorked a myriad of straight punches to the head. Yodsanklai answered back with slicing elbows, creating a cut on the defending champion’s eyelid. In the third round, Petchmorakot opened up the action with a left elbow, while Yodsanklai countered with a straight left hand down the middle. Petchmorakot increased his punch output in the fourth, tagging Yodsanklai with elbows and straights, but the legend would not surrender. In the fifth and final round, Yodsanklai ambushed Petchmorakot with combinations, while the champion danced away to keep himself safe from range. In the end, Petchmorakot did just enough to earn the victory by a close majority decision. In a ONE Super Series Kickboxing Super-Bout, Thai featherweight talents Superbon and Sitthichai “Killer Kid” Sitsongpeenong figured in a thrilling three-round war of attrition. The first round was close, as both Sitthichai and Superbon traded their best offense at the center of the ONE Championship ring. The second round saw much of the same action, with both men winding up on their kicks and doubling up on their punches, but it was Superbon who started to pull away with a higher output and more impactful strikes. In the third and final round, Sitthichai and Superbon turned on the aggression, attacking each other from multiple angles with neither man willing to take a step backward. In the end, Superbon recorded a hard-earned victory, getting the better of his trilogy with Sitthichai via unanimous decision on the judges’ scorecards. In the mixed martial arts women’s atomweight division, reigning ONE Atomweight Muay Thai World Champion Stamp Fairtex continued her rise through the ranks with another exciting victory. Stamp put together another masterful striking performance, dominating fellow Thai warrior Sunisa “Thunderstorm” Srisen to earn win number five in her young career. At the sound of the first round bell, Stamp came out aggressively, looking for the Thai clinch. Once she had Srisen secured in close quarters, Stamp began unloading on a plethora of hard knees to the midsection. Srisen showed incredible toughness in enduring Stamp’s offensive barrage, but the end came shortly after. Stamp capitalized on a botched takedown from Srisen, winding up on her opponent’s back where she finished the bout with a series of punches. In a mixed martial arts catchweight contest, Brazilian newcomer Fabricio “Wonder Boy” Andrade made an impressive ONE Championship debut, dominating Mark “Tyson” Fairtex Abelardo of New Zealand and the Philippines en route to a spectacular finish within two rounds. Action started off on the feet in the first round, with each man landing significant power shots. Abelardo stalked and chased Andrade across the ring, but the Brazilian showed poise and was able to pick the Filipino-Kiwi apart from the outside. In the second round, Andrade continued his elusive movement, peppering Abelardo from range before swiftly taking his back when the opportunity presented itself. From there, Andrade latched onto in a deep rear-naked choke. Abelardo faded rapidly, and was effectively put to sleep as the referee called a halt to the contest. Kicking off the action at ONE: NO SURRENDER were Thai striking superstars “The Angel Warrior” Panpayak Jitmuangnon and "The Kicking Machine" Superlek Kiatmoo9, who squared off in a three-round ONE Super Series Muay Thai contest. This was the first time the two flyweights met inside the ONE Championship ring, after having faced each other multiple instances before in Thailand’s biggest arenas. Superlek was aggressive to start the bout, connecting on a series of combinations in the opening round. Panpayak scored with a handful of solid counter shots in the second frame, as Superlek continued his onslaught. In the third and final round, Superlek repeatedly found a home for his right kick on Panpayak’s body, as he ran away with a unanimous decision victory on the judges’ scorecards. Official results for ONE: NO SURRENDER ONE Flyweight Muay Thai World Championship: Rodtang Jitmuangnon defeats Petchdam Petchyindee Academy by Majority Decision (MD) after 5 rounds ONE Featherweight Muay Thai World Championship: Petchmorakot Petchyindee Academy defeats Yodsanklai IWE Fairtex by Majority Decision (MD) after 5 rounds Kickboxing Featherweight bout: Superbon defeats Sitthichai Sitsongpeenong by Unanimous Decision (UD) after 3 rounds Mixed Martial Arts Atomweight bout: Stamp Fairtex defeats Sunisa Srisen by TKO (Strikes) at 3:59 minutes of round 1 Mixed Martial Arts Catch Weight (67.0 KG) bout: Fabricio Andrade defeats Mark Fairtex Abelardo by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 1:11 minutes of round 2 Muay Thai Flyweight bout: Superlek Kiatmoo9 defeats Panpayak Jitmuangnon by Unanimous Decision (UD) after 3 rounds.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 1st, 2020

Now showing: Cinema Drive-In

As people adopt new habits apt for the changing times, businesses are also compelled to innovate and deliver new ways for everyone to experience the activities they have always enjoyed. One of these is recapturing the essence and joy of watching a film inside the halls of a cinema. While movie theaters still have yet to open, SM Cinema gives its patrons the perfect opportunity to see upcoming films through its newest out-of-home entertainment experience, the “SM Cinema Drive-in: Movies at Sundown”. A throwback to the good old days of drive-in theaters, SM Cinema relives this experience for a new generation to enjoy, bringing them a fresh avenue for a #SafeAndFunMovieWatching crusade from the comfort of their cars. Opening at SM City Pampanga Amphitheater, SM Cinema’s “Movies at Sundown” allows guests to watch movies on the big screen while observing social distancing rules set by the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF). Starting today, Friday, July 31, 2020, it will open to the general public featuring the movies’ “Train to Busan 2: Peninsula” and “My Spy. The “SM Cinema Drive-in: Movies at Sundown” experience A first in the Philippines, SM Cinema’s drive-in theater takes Filipino viewers to a new horizon of movie-watching. Guests will be assigned their own parking spots to be guided by traffic marshalls. Once settled, spectators can see the film of their choice on a 20m x 8m screen raised 3-feet above the ground, and will be asked to tune in to a specific frequency on their car’s FM radio to broadcast the audio straight into their vehicles. Guests can also choose the 6:30PM or 8:50PM schedules from July 31 to August 2. In the succeeding weeks, schedules will be every Thursday to Sundays at 6:45PM. And what’s a drive-in cinema without movie snacks? For a ticket price of only P400 per person, this gives viewers the chance to relish in a new cinematic experience paired with a free Regular Popcorn, Bottled Water, and Beef Franks from SnackTime. A #SafeAndFunMovieWatching for Filipinos Optimizing the best view for all guests, two (2) persons can be inside the car and a maximum of four (4) guests will be allowed. Attendees must also be between the ages 21 and 59, pursuant to the safety guidelines set by the IATF. For added safety, viewers will also be asked to stay inside their vehicles with their masks on and practice social distancing all throughout the duration of the movie. Tickets for SM Cinema’s “Movies at Sundown” must be purchased online in advance at www.smtickets.com to ensure an uninterrupted viewing experience. No tickets will be sold at the venue, and viewers are advised to arrive at least 30 minutes before their scheduled screening. “At SM Cinema, we have always explored new dimensions in film screenings to give our viewers the best movie-watching experience they deserve. Now that new norms have come to us, we do our best to meet our audience where they’re at, all while presenting a safe and innovative movie entertainment setup that’s a first in the country,” said Ruby Ann Reyes, SM Cinema’s Vice President for Marketing. As a household name in film screening, SM Cinema brings back to its audience the joy of seeing movies on screen as they introduce a new way for people to catch their blockbuster favorites. Now available at SM City Pampanga—and soon in five other branches nationwide— catch the next big titles at the “SM Cinema Drive-in: Movies at Sundown” starting today, Friday, July 31, 2020 at SM City Pampanga. Purchase your tickets online via www.smtickets.com. .....»»

Category: newsSource:  mb.com.phRelated NewsAug 1st, 2020

MYX Awards 2020 dominated Twitter with 4 million Tweets globally

​Twitter partnered once again with MYX Philippines to bring back the power of Original Filipino Music (OPM) to every Filipinos’ home with its first-ever virtual celebration of the most-awaited MYX Awards 2020......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 28th, 2020