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Asia Pacific property markets start recovery this year

Property markets in Asia Pacific are expected to start their recovery by the middle of the year, driven by investor appetite for assets with income stability......»»

Category: financeSource: philstar philstarJan 13th, 2021

Pump prices on slight rollback next week

            Just in time for the start of the Christmas traffic build-up, motorists can enjoy a slight relief in their pockets next week as pump prices will be on rollback of P0.10 to P0.20 per liter for gasoline; and P0.25 to P0.35 per liter for diesel. MB file photo. (Mark Balmores)             Kerosene prices will also be reduced by P0.15 to P0.25 per liter, based on the calculation of the oil companies as hinged on the Mean of Platts Singapore (MOPS).             Next week’s adjustments will break the cycle of mixed up-and-down movements in pump prices which featured prominently in the domestic oil market in recent weeks.             In a monitoring report of the Department of Energy (DOE), it indicated that the year-to-date adjustments in oil prices hover at a net decrease of P4.67 per liter for gasoline; P10.01 per liter for diesel; and P13.44 per liter for kerosene.             Pump prices in the Philippines are influenced by two major factors: the swing in oil prices in the world market; and the fluctuations in the peso-dollar exchange rate.             According to the energy department, the demand recovery for oil in Asia will continue to track “bumpy roads” across products, with longer pace of rebound anticipated for the aviation sector.             It added that refinery runs in the region may scale up by the fourth quarter of this year, but price lifts may take longer to be concretized – and the assumption is for it happening through 2021.             Primarily for gasoline, it was noted that demand may still weaken because of the resurgence of Covid-19 infections, which may then lower winter driving activities especially in Europe......»»

Category: newsSource:  mb.com.phRelated NewsOct 24th, 2020

We now start planning for economic recovery

    THE Philippines, along with the rest of the world, suffered considerable contraction of its economy because of the COVID-19 pandemic. In its October, 2020, Economic Update for East Asia and the Pacific, the World Bank said it expects the Philippine economy to contract by 6.9 percent in 2020. But it should rebound to […].....»»

Category: newsSource:  tempoRelated NewsOct 4th, 2020

Slow economic recovery

The Asian Development Bank no longer expects a quick recovery in the economies of the Asia Pacific region next year. Even the pace of recovery is not crystal clear. The availability of a vaccine to neutralize COVID-19 remains the X factor......»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsSep 18th, 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

When We Were Volleyball Queens (Part 2)

(This story was originally published back in March 24, 2015) Back in 1993 the Philippine national team defied the odds by toppling the region’s women’s volleyball giant Thailand. Rosemarie Prochina, part of the national team sent to the 17th Southeast Asian Games, continues with her story of the things that transpired during the last shining moment of our Filipina athletes in the sport.    Buy gold? No, we’ll win them   Prochina revealed that they had an extra motivation in the championship match against Thailand after an incident involving her teammate Bernadeth Burcelis. A Thai tried to get into their heads. A warning shot of psychological warfare, perhaps an attempt to bully the Filipinas out of their wits.      “Actually yung team manager nila kinantyawan kami nu’ng mag-shopping kami,” Prochina said. “Sinabihan niya si Burcelis, sabi niya “Oh you buy many, many golds now because tomorrow you will only get silver.” The Filipina didn’t talk back, she and the national team simply let their game do the talking.      “Yun ang sabi niya. So kami parang di naman din niya sinabi sa amin (kaagad), pero sa kanya (Burcelis) OK lang yun. Basta maglaro lang kami,” Prochina said. During the game, Prochina said that everybody was doing their part even those sitting on the bench. “Yun ang maganda sa team namin na kahit na kaming nasa bench, di ako first six kasi,” she admitted. “Kaming nasa bench kahit parang di kami makakalaro nandoon kami sa bench nagpi-pray, lahat todo support. Tapos kapag may timeout, magma-massage kami sa mga teammates namin.” Zenaida Ybanez also won the Best Spiker and Most Valuable Player award while Leonora Escolante was named Best Setter.  For Prochina their feat showed the never-say-die spirit of the Filipinas. “So yun very (inspiring) ang pagkapanalo dun kasi underdogs kami,” she said.    Coach Tai, the lover boy?  SEA Games is not just about athletes trying to outplay their opponents for a podium spot. The biennial meet is organized for the purpose of developing friendship and camaraderie among nations. And some tried to take this fellowship into another level. Prochina gave away a secret that involves a name that is very famous in the volleyball circle today. Ateneo de Manila coach Tai Bundit did capture the hearts of local fans with his charm and heart strong mantra proven by the Lady Eagles’ back-to-back UAAP crown but 22 years ago the Thai had an early encounter with the Filipinos – and we are not talking about how he and his team demolished the PHI men’s squad. It was about something romantic. “Yung coach nila (Ateneo) magkasabayan kami sa national team,” said Prochina, who’s an Ateneo fan herself. “Yung coach nila na si Tai nagpang-abot kami.” The Thai women’s team looked at the Filipinas with fire in their eyes, but not Bundit as he glowed with sparks of stars and moonshine while focused on a Pinay whose name gives happiness to his heart.   Yes, before Bundit danced his signature ‘kitiki-Tai’ moves, he tried to tango.            “Kami yang (magkakasabayan) noong nanliligaw-ligaw pa yan sa teammate ko, si Joy Degoroztisa,” Prochina said in a chuckle. “Ewan ko kung nagkasagutan sila, huh!” she continued. “Naku baka (mapagalitan ako ni Joy) kasi nanligaw siya (Bundit) dun. Si Joy nasa Kuwait na siya ngayon.” Asked for more juicy details, Prochina said that her memory is a bit sketchy about the whirlwind romance.   “Actually, di ko masyado (nasubaybayan na yung nangyari) kasi nga yung laro di ba ilang weeks lang yun tapos hindi ko na alam kung anong nangyari,” Prochina added. And she really has no idea if Bundit got one through the block or totally got shut down. Bundit is now happily married while Degoroztisa is based in Kuwait.   “Masakit para sa amin”  After the team brought home the mint, the Pinays failed to win it all in the next SEAG editions paving way for Thailand’s domination in the region.  The Thais got their revenge on their turf in 1995 against the Filipinas in the finals. Again winning another gold after two years at the expense of PHI, who had bronze finishes in 2001, 2003 and in 2005 edition held in Manila.  Sadly, in the next four SEA Games no women’s team were fielded and the Pinays were overtaken by in terms of competitiveness by Vietnam and Indonesia.     “Masakit para sa amin kasi hanggang ngayon hindi pa rin na-break,” a regretful Prochina said. “Nag-20 years na hindi pa rin na-break yung record, nag-post ako sa FB sabi ko “Happy 20th year sa pagka-gold naming”, ganyan, pero napakasakit kasi wala pang pumalit,” she added. “Hindi ka-proud na kayo lang kasi siyempre parang anong nangyari sa programa ng volleyball sa Pilipinas?” A degradation of the sport she painfully watched. “Yung 1995 malakas pa rin yun kahit nawala na yung iba,” she said. “Maraming mga matatangkad gaya nina Cherry Rivera Macatangay, Roxanne Pimentel, si Joy Degoroztisa, Estrella Tan Enriquez na nag-convert na lang sa basketball kasi nawala na nga yung (volleyball program).”   New beginning  The dream of standing taller than Thailand may still be years away, but Prochina is happy that there is a rebirth of volleyball in the country. With the sport having an avenue outside of collegiate leagues with the Shakey’s V-League and Philippine Superliga and the interest of the nation to volleyball taking its roots again, the future looks bright. “Yung volleyball sa atin paangat na talaga saka sobrang happy kaming mga older players na nakikitang ganoon na ang progress ng volleyball sa Pilipinas,” she said. It’s a fact that we are not at par in skills and development wise with the Thais – a solid proof of it is having their players fielded as imports to raise the level of competition in our local leagues – but Prochina is glad that we are now taking small steps.      “Kasi lumayo na ang Thailand e, lumayo ng milya-milya and nawala tayo. Pero kaya yang (mahabol) wala namang imposible,” she said. “Pero mas malalaki nga tayo actually. Ang players natin may 6-foot-5, may mga ganoon. Yung mga players natin malalaki. “Sa atin lang siguro yung continuity ng training, at ng support.” Larong Volleyball ng Pilipinas, Inc. as part of their volleyball program has formed an Under-23 men’s and women’s team that will compete in the Asian age group championships on May. After skipping volleyball events in four SEAG editions, the PHI will field both men’s and women’s teams for the meet in Singapore on June.            Promise of tomorrow          Prochina believes that PHI volleyball has a bright future and a repeat of their feat two decades ago is not far away.  “Of course. Malalaki and mas may advantage ang mga bata ngayon kasi sila yung skills at techniques nila meron na. Yung sa katawan, sa bilis, sa talon, meron,” she said. “Kami noon dinevelop pa. Ako personally dinevelop ako, kung hindi dahil sa coaches ko na sina coach Kid Santos and coach Emil Lontoc, na naniwala sa akin na gagaling ako at aabot ako sa level na ganoon, hindi ako tutuloy,” Prochina added. “Hindi katulad ngayon sobrang andami nating players na malalakas.” She is also overwhelmed by the fan base this generation of players built. “Marami talaga ngayon. Pero noong 2005 na naglaro kami ng V-League (for PSC (Lady Legends) nakakatawa lang noon na mayroong mga nagdadala (ng mga gamit) na mayroong mga signature naming na mga lumang players. Sinasabi nila na “Ay fan kami sa inyo.” Kami naman “Ay talaga, mayroon pala kaming mga fans,”” she said. “Mas malaki na (ang fanbase) kasi sa social media, alam na ng lahat ng tao ang nangyayari sa volleyball.”    Comparison Prochina picked Ateneo when asked if what team in her opinion mirrors the character of the 1993 team. “Kasi sila nag-start sila from scratch e. Tapos yung mga bata alam mong obedient sila sa nakikita mo sa laro. Hindi ko naman sinasabi na hindi obedient yun ibang teams ha,” she justified. “Pero kasi yung Ateneo galing talaga sila sa baba.” She also cited that long before Ateneo practiced meditation before and during games, they were already doing it as part of their routine. “Yes matagal na. Kasi nung nakita ko sila (Ateneo in meditation) sabi ko “Ah Ok. Kasi nag-coach din ako ng mga five years ago (in University of Asia and the Pacific) yun din ang itinuturo ko sa mga players na malaking bagay yung meditation,” she said. “Kasi sa SMAP (Sports Medicine Association of the Philippines) dati sa PSC (Philippine Sports Commission) sila ang nag-handle sa amin na nilagay kami sa isang room (for meditation),” Prochina added. “Tinantanong pa nga namin ang isa’t isa kung nakakatulong. Nakakatulong talaga siya tapos tinuruan nila kami na bago matulog, ayun, dapat may relaxation technique kami. Na dapat relaxed, alisin ang tension sa katawan tapos isipin mo na kinabukasan madali lang yung game. Yun talaga, malaking bagay siya." Just like Ateneo, they enjoyed every game. They are the original happy team. “Oo. Kasi yang si coach Emil Lontoc ang sinasabi niyan kapag maglalaro na kami “tiwala sa sarili at mag-enjoy sa game.” Yun yung sinasabi nila kapag magi-game kami. Kasi kung hindi ka naman magi-enjoy the game wala na, ano yun? E volleyball ito,” she said. And she agrees that Ateneo’s Alyssa Valdez is the new face of volleyball in the country – the phenom that was yet to be born a few days after they bagged the SEAG gold.  “Of course, siya talaga. Kahit asawa ko idol siya. Humble yung bata, bilib ako sa bata,” Prochina explained. “Nakikita ko yung eagerness niya. ‘Yung kapag umatras siya na papatay siya ng bola, makikita mo talaga yung killer’s instinct niya. Kapag naglaro na 100% talaga siya.” For Prochina, Valdez is Barina-Rojas of her time -- a sign of hope.    --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles          .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 5th, 2020

The Flying Carnival 2020 lands in Carmona, Cavite on March 6-8

For over two decades, the Philippine International Hot Air Balloon Fiesta has been, without question, the most highly-anticipated sports aviation event in Asia.  Known as "The Weekend of Everything That Flies", the Philippine International Hot Air Balloon Fiesta has also been the longest-running event of its kind, and has remained true to its longtime objectives of sparking interest in aviation, instilling discipline in young pilots, and imparting a spirit of volunteerism to the whole community.  This year, with the intention of continuing to spread this advocacy across the Philippines, organizers will be launching a three-day spectacle entitled "The Flying Carnival 2020: A Weekend of Almost Everything that Flies" set to be held at the San Lazaro Liesure Park in Carmona, Cavite on March 6-8, 2020.  The event will feature hot air balloons, helicopters, and air sports events as well as aviation career seminars, fly markets, food booths, and endless fun for the whole family! Set in a more comfortable viewing space, spectators will be treated to the sight of early morning balloon flights followed by non-stop flying exhibitions – paragliding, skydiving, helicopter demonstrations, RC control line exhibitions and kite flying.  Visitors can wander through a carnival setting, with food booths and entertainment for the whole family. Aviation souvenirs and unique finds can be bought at the Fly Market, and the weekend evenings will be capped off by a magical hot air balloon nightglow and fireworks display.  Those considering a career in aviation can attend the Aviation Career Seminars to be given by renowned aviators and industry practitioners – Fighter pilots from the Philippine Air Force; Naval Air Group pilots from the Philippine Navy; a female captain from Cebu Pacific Air, and Air Traffic Controller from the Air Traffic Service. They will be joined by FAI World Record holder from Spain, Michel Gordillo; Hot Air Balloon pilot from the United Kingdom, Pete Bish; and Capt. Joy Roa of Asian Air Safari. The seminars will be available to Business Class ticket holders. Seminar attendees will be given a certificate of completion, and can enjoy meals and gain admission to the event. Those who wish to experience the carnival in comfort can opt to get the First Class Ticket, which allows an all-access pass to the event, including meals, private viewing areas, and access to the aviation seminars and air-conditioned bazaar.  For tickets and other information, visit www.philballoonfest.net or stay up-to-date with event info by following @PIHABF on Facebook, and @philballoonfest on Instagram......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 18th, 2020

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

Several world-ranked stars will light up Dubai once again at Rotund aRumble 2 on November 22.

The #MTKFightNight – promoted by D4G Promotions in association with MTK Global and Round 10 Boxing Club – hosts a range of huge names including WBO world super-lightweight No. 1 Jack Catterall, India’s highly-ranked icon Vijender Singh, Pakistani boxing hero Muhammad Waseem, WBO world bantamweight No. 4 Thomas Patrick Ward and many, many more. A busy undercard kicks off with two local debutants in Fahad Al-Bloushi and Sultan Al-Nuaimi – moments of history for the sport in Dubai. Fighters from no fewer than 15 countries make up a lengthy bill ready to delight a packed audience at the luxurious Caesars Palace, Bluewaters as well as those tuning in on ESPN+ in association with Top Rank and on iFL TV. Here’s a sneak preview of what you need to know…   JACK CATTERALL vs. TIMO SCHWARZKOPF (10 rounds) With a stunning undefeated record of 24-0, 13 KOs, Catterall is already seen as a super-lightweight world champion in waiting. Chorley’s ‘El Gato’ has systematically destroyed all put before him since turning professional in 2012; claiming the Central Area, the WBO European, the WBO Inter-Continental and British crowns. As the No. 1 challenger in the world to WBO and WBC world champion Jose Ramirez, Catterall is in line for a career-defining world title shot in 2020 but standing in his way is the high-class Schwarzkopf. Germany’s Schwarzkopf (20-3, 12 KOs) is a former IBF International welterweight and EBU European super-lightweight champion and is likely to push Catterall into producing his very best on the night.   VIJENDER SINGH vs. CHARLES ADAMU (10 rounds) Undefeated Singh (11-0, 8 KOs) is a sporting icon in his home country and regularly rubs shoulders with the likes of Sachin Tendulkar. Having already picked up the WBO super-middleweight Asia Pacific super-middleweight title and the WBO Oriental crown, Singh continues to gather an entire nation behind him on his quest to reach world champion status. In Ghana’s vastly-experience Adamu (33-14, 26 KOs), Singh takes on a man who has been in with the likes of Billy Joe Saunders, Rocky Fielding, George Groves and Carl Froch. Singh said: “For me these fights are going to be a build up to the world title which I am aiming for in 2020. I am sure my debut fight in Dubai is going to be an exciting one and I’m looking forward to a knockout win in the early rounds.”   MUHAMMAD WASEEM vs. GANIGAN LOPEZ (8 rounds) In Pakistan, world-class Waseem (9-1, 7 KOs) is another huge national hero and is supported by compatriots such as Shoaib Akhtar. ‘Falcon’ enjoyed a stellar amateur career that included two Commonwealth Games medals and went on to challenge for the IBF world flyweight title in just his eighth fight as a professional. Although Waseem was narrowly denied the world crown by now MTK Global team-mate Moruti Mthalane, he takes the next step back towards the top against tough Mexican Lopez (36-10, 19 KOs). Waseem, whose last performance was a stunning first-round stoppage on #RotundaRumble, said: “I’m confident of stealing the show once again. I’m very happy to be handed the chance to perform in Dubai for a second time in a row.”   THOMAS PATRICK WARD vs. MARTIN CASILLAS (8 rounds) The fighting pride of the north-east and a super-bantamweight king in waiting, unbeaten Ward (28-0, 4 KOs) is ready to announce himself to Dubai fans in style. The skillful 25-year-old has already made his name in the US by outclassing Jesse Hernandez back in February and is eager to accelerate his march towards world honours having recently signed with MTK Global. Ward said: “I’m very excited to be fighting in Dubai. It’s new for me. I’ve been all around the world but it’s always nice to showcase your skills in front of brand new audience.”   ROHAN DATE vs. JUSTICE ADDY (6 rounds) Dubai-based Irishman Date (10-0-1, 8 KOs) snatched headlines on his last outing on #RotundaRumble when he decimated Pardeep Kharera inside a single round. As he continues to move towards title shots, the 26-year-old will be looking for a similarly spectacular display against Ghana’s heavy hitting Addy (16-6-1, 14 KOs). Having already fought in Dubai four times since turning professional in mid-2016, Date is amassing a substantial following and is looking to charge up the 147lb rankings.   JAYR RAQUINEL vs. JACK AMISA (8 rounds) Raquinel (11-1-1, 8 KOs) is an emerging star of Filipino boxing and has already challenged WBC Silver flyweight honours last year. At the age of just 22, the man from Cauayan has the chance to make a name for himself on the big stage against the experienced Amisa from Indonesia.   HASIBULLAH AHMADI vs. DETNARONG OMKRATHOK (6 rounds) A teen sensational proudly representing Afghanistan, Ahmadi has impressed in blasting his way to 7-0 as a professional. A product of the local Round 10 Boxing Club, Ahmadi recorded an entertaining points win over China’s teak-tough Shidong Cai (10-4-1, 2 KOs) on the last #RotundaRumble show and will look to follow up in front of a growing fanbase.   FAHAD AL-BLOUSHI vs. SANDRO TUGHUSHI (4 rounds) Along with team-mate Sultan Al-Nuaimi, 23-year-old lightweight Al-Bloushi will be making history in joining Majid Al-Naqbi as Dubai’s only professional boxers when he makes his debut in the paid ranks on the night. Al-Bloushi said: “I’m proud to say that this is a stepping stone for us to use our talents further beyond and show the world what the UAE is made of. It’s a blessing to be able to start off the right way, in my home country and to showcase my talent to the boxing community and the community of the UAE.”   SULTAN AL-NUAIMI vs. CHARLES LATUPERISSA (4 rounds) Another man looking to cause a stir on his first outing as a professional is super-flyweight Al-Nuaimi, who won two national titles and represented UAE on numerous occasions. Al-Nuaimi said: “Being a professional boxer representing the UAE is a huge honour that I can’t describe. We can show the world that we are capable of achieving great things and making our nation proud.”.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 18th, 2019

Smartphone giant OPPO renews three-year partnership with world-famous Football team FC Barcelona

World-leading smartphone brand OPPO recently announced its renewed three-year partnership with football team FC Barcelona. This furthers an already successful four-year alliance with the world-famous team, which is now the longest running partnership between a Chinese brand and a European football club. This new chapter was also commemorated by the release of a Limited Edition FC Barcelona Reno 10x Zoom Series handset.   Kicking off an exciting new chapter The renewed partnership will include in-stadium signage, training camps, workshops for fans, plus creative online and off-line fans engagement activities; kicking off an exciting new chapter in the OPPO- FC Barcelona story. “These elements aim to inspire Barca fans, strengthen the community by bringing them closer to the club and OPPO products, and drive our two sides’ shared values of passion, creativity, innovation, and perfection,” explained Derek Sun, OPPO Global Marketing Director.  Both organizations’ mutual philosophies have become even more apparent with this re-upped partnership. Just as FC Barcelona’s world-renowned passion for the “beautiful game” has effectively transformed football into an art; likewise, OPPO aims to create beauty in people’s lives, through cutting-edge devices that unleash users’ creativity. Both partners’ shared values extend to innovation and perfection, with OPPO setting up institutes across the world to advance the company’s tech innovation and research capabilities in 5G and AI, as well as the Barça Innovation Hub, that is exploring the use of new technologies on the football field.  Camp Nou is also set to become the first stadium in Europe with dedicated 5G coverage.  OPPO has been able to reach out to Barça’s more than 200 million fans across the world, making this a critical element of the company’s overseas branding strategy.   An already successful partnership When OPPO and FC Barcelona kickstarted their partnership in 2015, it marked the very first in-depth cooperation between a Chinese brand and a European football club.  OPPO places tremendous value in sports globally, becoming the first Asian sponsor of the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in the UK, the first Chinese sponsor of the French Tennis Open, Roland-Garros, while also backing the Indian national Cricket Team. These events serve as a communication bridge for OPPO, effectively bringing its young and innovative technology to sports fans worldwide.   Stunning new handset that combines technology with art Since the start of OPPO and FC Barcelona, it has gifted fans several limited edition smartphones. Under the slogan “The Smartphone of Champions”, OPPO released the FC Barcelona Edition of the R7 Plus in 2015. Following this initial success came a series of well-received limited edition handsets including the R9 (2016), F3 (2017) and R11 Plus (2017).     This 2019, stunning new Limited Edition FC Barcelona’s handset from OPPO celebrates the three-year partnership, highlighting to fans the fruitful relationship between the two. This commemorative edition of OPPO’s Reno 10x Zoom phone blends the team’s famous garnet and blue colors, creating a genuine work of art that is sure to resonate with Barça supporters globally.   Sporting the powerful features of the Reno 10x Zoom such as the camera with 60x zoom and Ultra Night Mode 2.0, panoramic screen, and VOOC 3.0, this limited edition smartphone offers something more special to fans.  Inspired by the club flags waving in Camp Nou, the phone’s exterior sports the club’s famous garnet and blue colors. This used an innovative, industry-first heat-press technique to create its unique gradient effect. Overlaying this are two Barça logos: a larger blurred logo, paying homage to the club’s glorious history, as well as a smaller gold team logo at the bottom, which represents the club’s present, as well as its bright future.  It also comes equipped with custom software, including exclusive wallpapers and icons such as footballs, garnet and blue kits, and more. Fans can also feel like Barca is with them wherever they go, thanks to its custom ringtones that sample the FC Barcelona anthem and stadium sounds.  The Limited Edition FC Barcelona OPPO Reno 10x Zoom with 8GB RAM and 256GB ROM will be available in select markets in Europe and Asia.  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 28th, 2019

MP Promotions fighters to join Pacquiao-Thurman undercard in Las Vegas

Eight-division world champion and reigning WBA (Regular) Welterweight World Champion Manny "Pacman" Pacquiao won't be the lone Filipino fighting on at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on Saturday, July 20th (Sunday, July 21st, Manila time).  The 40-year old Pinoy boxing icon will be on the marquee as he tries to capture the WBA (Super) Welterweight World Championship against undefeated American Keith "One Time" Thurman, while a pair of fighters from his MP Promotions stable will be competing on the undercard as well.  MP Promotions fighters Flyweight Genisis Libranza (18-1 10KO) and Welterweight Jayar Inson (18-2 12KO) have been added to the #PacquiaoThurman undercard. pic.twitter.com/yREsCBDTh6 — Steve Angeles (@StevieAngeles) July 3, 2019 25-year old Genisis "Cobra" Libranza (18-1, 10 KO) will be facing American Carlos Maldonado (11-3, 7 KO) in a flyweight bout.  Libranza has been with Team Pacquiao in the US since the start of camp, even before he was scheduled to compete in Vegas on the 20th.  "Maganda ang training namin kasi kasabay ko si Senator, and sobrang ganda ang training namin," Libranza told ABS-CBN's Steve Angeles. "Preparado kaming lahat."  Libranza, a native of Agusan del Sur, is on an impressive seven-fight winning streak, with his last loss coming back in 2017, a KO loss to South African Moruti Mthalane for the IBO Flyweight World Championship.  He's coming off a unanimous decision win in Carson back in February.  Also on the card will be Davaeño welterweight Jayar "Hitman" Inson (18-2, 12 KO), who meets veteran Mahonri Montes (35-9-1, 24 KO).  Inson, a former WBO Asia Pacific Welterweight Champion, is coming off a split decision loss to Jonathan Steele in the undercard of the Pacquiao-Adrien Broner bout in Las Vegas back in January.  "Masaya kasi kahit na talo ako [last time], binigyan naman ako ng pagkakataon na lumaban ulit," said Inson.  Undefeated Filipino-American John Leo "The Lion" Dato (11-0-1, 7 KO) is also expected to be on the card.  Apart from the Pinoys joining Pacquiao in Vegas on July 20th, a couple of Pinoy former champs are also in camp as they get ready for their own upcoming contests.  Former three-divison world champion Johnriel "Quadro Alas" Casimero is back on track and is preparing for a bout in Manila this August, while former WBA Interim Featherweight World Champion Jhack "El Kapitan" Tepora, who is coming off a win back in June, is also keeping busy with Team Pacquiao.  "Masaya kami dito na nag-tetraining, kasi maraming Pilipino and isang team kami," said Casimero. "Hindi boring yung pagsisikap namin kasi andiyan kaming lahat. Masaya kami sa training kahit mahirap, kaya sinisikap natin."  Casimero has won his last three bouts, and will be challenging for the WBO Interim Bantamweight World Championship against Cesar Ramirez.  H/T: Steve Angeles, ABS-CBN    Don't miss the action! Catch Manny Pacquiao challenge Keith Thurman for the WBA (Super) Welterweight World Championship LIVE on SKY PPV this coming Sunday, July 21st! Follow the blow-by-blow coverage on DZMM Radyo Patrol 630 starting at 9:00 AM!  ABS-CBN channel 2's free TV telecast will begin at 10 am. Replay will be at 3:00 PM on ABS-CBN S+A channel 23.  The entire bout will be available on iWant beginning Monday, July 22. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 11th, 2019

NBA celebrates banner season in the Philippines

NBA Philippines press release MANILA, PHILIPPINES – The 2018-19 NBA season marked a banner year for the NBA in the Philippines, as the league saw growth across broadcast viewership, NBA League Pass subscriptions, social media consumption, and more. [Watch the Playoffs on NBA League Pass for 30% less with this limited time offer! Select Annual package and use code SAVE30 at checkout to redeem] “As we near the culmination of this incredible NBA season, the NBA’s remarkable growth in the Philippines speaks to the league’s impact and relevance to the country’s millions of passionate NBA fans,” said NBA Philippines Managing Director Carlo Singson. “The NBA’s commitment to innovation has provided Filipinos with a multitude of ways to experience the energy and excitement of the game. With the continued support of our partners, we look forward to building on this season’s success and taking the league’s popularity in the Philippines to even greater heights in the years to come.” Below are the highlights from the 2018-19 NBA season in the Philippines: Regular-Season Viewership 5.4M – The most-watched regular-season game in the Philippines during the 2018-19 season reached a peak audience of 5.4 million viewers on ABS-CBN. Through April 2019, average audience for live NBA games was up 15% and 87% year-over-year across ABS-CBN S+A and Basketball TV, respectively, reaching its highest mark since the 2016-17 season. 21% – Through April 2019, average audience of live, delayed and on-demand broadcasts of NBA games was up 21% year-over-year across ABS-CBN S + A, Basketball TV and FOX Sports, reaching the highest average audience since the 2016-17 season. NBA League Pass Growth 84% – Through March 2019, NBA League Pass subscribers in the Philippines increased 84% year-over-year, marking the largest year-over-year growth since 2012-13 season. To date, the Philippines ranks fourth in NBA League Pass subscribers among markets outside the U.S. and China and second in Asia-Pacific. Social Media 10.6M – The NBA’s Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts have more than 10.6 million combined followers from the Philippines, the most of any country outside of the U.S. 5.5M – Viewers from the Philippines to the NBA’s global YouTube Channel watched 5.5 million hours of content during the 2018-19 season, the most of any country outside of the U.S. 3.7M – Followers of the NBA Philippines Facebook page increased 15% year-over-year, making it the largest regional NBA Facebook page at over 3.7 million fans. Marketing Partnerships and Events 14 – Following the announcement of Vivo as Official Smartphone of the NBA in the Philippines, this season the league has a record 14 partners in the country.   2M – The Jr. NBA Philippines presented by Alaska achieved its highest participation numbers ever in 2019 - more than 59,000 players and coaches - and has reached more than two million players, parents and coaches across more than 190 cities and municipalities since 2007. Merchandise 62% – NBA merchandise sales from the Philippines on NBAStore.com have increased 62% year-over-year.   The NBA Finals 2019 tip off in the Philippines on Friday, May 31 on ABS-CBN, Basketball TV and NBA Premium TV......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 30th, 2019

Chile amateur goes from no big victories to Masters

DOUG FERGUSON, AP Golf Writer   HONOLULU (AP) — Toto Gana hit what he described as the 'best shot I've hit in my whole life,' a wedge to 3 feet for a birdie to win the Latin America Amateur Championship and earn a trip to the Masters in April. His best shot produced his biggest trophy. Asked what his greatest achievement in golf was before his victory in Panama, the 19-year-old from Chile said: 'I didn't have any achievements, to be honest. I had won a couple of tournaments at home when I was really, really young.' The Latin America Amateur completed its third year, a stroke-play tournament created by Augusta National, the USGA and the Royal & Ancient to spur growth in that part of the world. It follows the successful launch of the Asia Pacific Amateur. The Asia Pacific Amateur is producing a higher pedigree of champions — Hideki Matsuyama won twice, and the winner last year was Curtis Luck, the reigning U.S. Amateur champion. The last two Latin America winners were surprises — Gana and 16-year-old Paul Chaplet of Costa Rica last year. The other winner was Matias Dominguez of Chile, who was a junior at Texas Tech. Gana said the only hard part about his victory was beating Joaquin Niemann of Chile, one of his best friends who won the Junior World in 2015 at Torrey Pines. 'I really never thought I could win this tournament because all the other players have won many other tournaments, very big tournaments,' Gana said in a conference call after his victory Sunday. 'What I did was keep a cool head. When I saw that I had a chance to win, I believed in myself that I could do. And I gave it my all.' Chile will have a player represented at Augusta National for the second time in three years. The only other Chilean player at the Masters was Enrique Orellana, who missed the cut in 1964. Gana has flair, and he showed how much passion he has for golf when explaining how he got started. 'When I was a little boy, 8 years old, my stepfather taught me to play golf on the practice range,' he said. 'When I shot a really nice shot, I never quit.' Gana will be enrolling at Lynn University in Florida. ___ BLOOMING START: Justin Rose played the Sony Open as part of the new 'strength of field' regulation on the PGA Tour that requires players who played fewer than 25 events last year to add a tournament they had not played in four years. Rose was so excited about this year that he might have started earlier if he would have been eligible. He failed to win a PGA Tour event for the first time since 2009. But in a year slowed by injury, Rose geared himself for golf's return to the Olympics and won the gold medal in Rio. That was worth an exemption into the four majors (Rose already is eligible for them), but the PGA Tour did not offer a spot in SBS Tournament of Champions. 'I didn't inquire,' Rose said about Kapalua. 'But in my mind, I was surprised that it didn't count in a way, just because, why wouldn't it? It's a one-off thing.' He thought maybe the tour would only give a spot to Kapalua if the gold medalist was already a PGA Tour member, much like it treated the HSBC Champions early on in its World Golf Championships history. Rose chuckled, however, when he realized his history in Hawaii. 'It's funny enough, I don't have the right to say I should have been at Kapalua,' he said. 'Because I've won six years in a row and I've only been once.' A birdie on the final hole at the Sony Open gave him second place alone, which was worth $648,000. ___ PLAYING TO HIS STRENGTH: Jason Dufner is the defending champion at the CareerBuilder Challenger, where he won last year for the first time since the 2013 PGA Championship at Oak Hill. What changed? Very little. He attributed the drought to a neck and shoulder injury that he suffered at the 2014 Masters. Dufner tried to play through it all year until he was forced to pull out of his title defense in the PGA Championship at Valhalla, which kept him off the Ryder Cup team. Playing with the injury led to bad habits with his swing, which led to bad shots, too many memories of bad shots and eventually shattered confidence. 'People don't realize, once you start playing, you have to redo everything,' Dufner said. 'You see it with a lot of guys coming back. It takes them 6, 8, 12 months. I spent 2015 trying to get back to where I was.' Where he wants to be is one of the top ball-strikers in the game. As for putting? He manages. Dufner has finished no higher than No. 143 in the key putting statistic over the last four years, and while he has to pay attention to his setup, it's not as though he's going to abandon what got him here (his swing) to pour everything into becoming Jordan Spieth. 'I've been putting bad for 17 years,' he said. 'It's tough to change. I can hit it good enough to make up for it. I'll wait for my weeks where I putt good and try to win.' ___ THE RACE TO MEXICO: Mackenzie Hughes won the RSM Classic, and his first thought was going to the Masters. Now that it's beginning to sink, the Canadian rookie has reason to consider other tournaments that were not on his schedule at the start of the season. First up is the World Golf Championship in Mexico. The top 10 in the FedEx Cup standings through the Honda Classic are eligible for the Mexico Championship, and there are only six tournaments between now and then. That's also true for Pat Perez, who tied for third at Kapalua and is No. 3 in the FedEx Cup. Rod Pampling is at No. 6. The other World Golf Championships event in March is based off the world ranking, so those three players have much more to do for them to get into the top 64. One player who might have secured his spot was Kevin Kisner, who shot 60 in the third round of the Sony Open and wound up in a tie for fourth. That took Kisner from No. 51 to No. 41, making it difficult to fall that far in two months. ___ DIVOTS: Justin Thomas moving to No. 8 in the world means that six of the top 10 players are under 30. ... The Golf Writers Association of America has voted former PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem for the William D. Richardson Award for outstanding contributions to golf. For the GWAA's award for press cooperation, it was a tie between Ben Crenshaw and Stewart Cink. They will be honored at the GWAA annual awards dinner on April 5 in Augusta. ... The three courses used for the CareerBuilder Challenge — PGA West Stadium Course, PGA West Nicklaus and La Quinta — ranked among the top 10 in easiest courses on the PGA Tour last year. ... The fourth Latin America Amateur Championship will be played at Prince of Wales Country Club next year in Santiago, Chile. ... The European Tour now has eight events in its Rolex Series with China-based HNA Group signing a five-year deal to be title sponsor of the French Open. That will raise the purse to $7 million in line with other Rolex Series events. ___ STAT OF THE WEEK: Justin Thomas hit 34 drives that went at least 330 yards during his two weeks in Hawaii — 20 on the Plantation Course at Kapalua, 14 at Waialae Country Club. ___ FINAL WORD: 'If there's no defense, then you ought to be able to make birdies. If there's wind, you ought to be struggling.' — Kevin Kisner. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 18th, 2017

Weakness of trade to persist -- ESCAP

THE PHILIPPINES and much of Asia Pacific can be expected to see some recovery in merchandise exports next year, according to a United Nations (UN) report that nevertheless warned that structural changes to major economies like China could mean the current.....»»

Category: newsSource:  bworldonlineRelated NewsNov 30th, 2016

Most Asia stocks down after gains, China growth beats expectations

Most markets fell Monday as investors took a breather following a recent rally, though Hong Kong and Shanghai enjoyed gains after data showed China's economy grew more than expected last year......»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsJan 18th, 2021

Economic Recovery Delays Anew Due to New COVID-19 Strain

Despite experts seeing 2021 as the “year of economic comeback” not only in the Philippines but the entire globe, economic recovery is once again expected to be delayed due to COVID’s new variant. On Saturday, President Rodrigo Duterte announced that face-to-face classes that are supposed to start again this January, have been postponed again due […].....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsDec 30th, 2020

Vista Land optimistic on real estate recovery

Vista Land & Lifescapes, Inc., one of the country’s leading integrated property developers and the largest homebuilder, expressed optimism about the recovery of the real estate industry next year......»»

Category: financeSource:  thestandardRelated NewsDec 29th, 2020

Prioritize water security in pandemic recovery

Economies in Asia and the Pacific are urged to put water security at the top of their pandemic recovery agenda as it is the one of the first lines of defenses against the transmission of COVID-19 and other diseases, according to a new flagship report by the Asian Development Bank......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsDec 26th, 2020

JLL named Property Management Team of the Year in SE Asia

JLL has been recognized as the Property Management Team of the Year at the annual RICS (Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors) Awards 2020 Southeast Asia......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsDec 5th, 2020

Return to pre-pandemic growth seen beyond Duterte gov’t

Return to pre-pandemic growth seen beyond Duterte gov’t MANILA, Philippines — Next year will be brighter for Asia Pacific economies, but the Philippines will be among the last nations to fully recoup last year’s gains lost from the health crisis, a process that would outlast the Duterte administration. Joining India and Japan, the country is considered mired in […].....»»

Category: newsSource:  balitaRelated NewsNov 19th, 2020

AirAsia sees signs of recovery

The AirAsia Group, Asia’s largest low-cost carrier, expects air travel to bounce back soon as it sees strong signs of recovery in its key domestic markets, including the Philippines......»»

Category: financeSource:  philstarRelated NewsNov 19th, 2020