In case you haven’t heard yet, Asian Games is over. And for Team Philippines, it was a nightmare – but not as horrible as the Pilipinas Kay Ganda, which for me is a total disaster. It is so funny that we are just eyeing for four (!) medals – but in a struck of bad fortune – we only got 3 gold medals (no typo-error there, it is really t-h-r-e-e) while the Great Wall of China got 199. Schucks! We also got four silver and nine bronze medals which placed us at 19/45. It is our worst performance since 1998.
Add to my dismay, there was no media coverage of the event. Holy crap! It’s such a shame that even NBN didn’t cover the grandest sporting event in the continent. Isn’t that government-owned station have automatic rights to cover these kinds of spectacles? I’m not just sure though.
I’m not discounting the efforts of PSC and various NSAs but I believe that sports program in the country is so half-assessed. I know that our athletes can do much much better, given with proper support and training.
Here is my two-cent worth of (sensible) suggestions:
# 1. Why not build a sports academy? A world-class sports facility that will train potential medal earners. Where to get the fund, you may ask. Congressmen have P200M worth of pork each – why not share some of it to the athletes? Greed is a mortal sin, remember?
#2. I watched last Monday’s I-Witness episode and I learned that the monthly training allowance of our athletes is just between P5,000-P10,000. I think it’s very small. Is it possible if our national athletes would be paid with salaries rather than allowances? Then make them members of Philhealth, Pag-Ibig and SSS/GSIS, be entitled to 13th month pay, paid vacation and sick leave and a monthly pension after retirement.
#3. Let us concentrate on other sports aside from boxing, billiards and basketball. I’m thinking of archery. What you think? Archery doesn’t require the height of a basketball player or the power of a boxer. It only require skills and mental power, lots of it. Filipinos have all that.
#4. Let us send more athletes. We send more free-rider officials and their spouses than athletes. It’s an official trip, meaning taxpayers are footing their expenses, so perhaps we need to keep eye on this. Those officials are just after the free tour, anyway. We all know that so don’t argue.
#5. Pirate Chinese coaches. Or if not, train our athletes in China. Why not? They are world champs in almost everything. In the 2010 Asiad alone, they got 199 gold, 119 silver and 98 bronze medals, yeah, believe it or not.
And oh, before I forget… Let us put the rebels to good use. They are good in shooting, right? Why not get a medal for it? Lol, just kidding.
During the olden days, way before I was born, the Asiad is something that Filipinos look forward to. But now, it seems that most of us are losing interest. It made me sad that we, supposedly the savviest techie in this part of the world (I am thinking that if there’s an Asiad event for netsurfing, Filipinos would bag the gold, silver and bronze altogether. It’s a no brainer.) doesn’t capitalized on our internet prowess to significantly boost the confidence of our athletes. And it’s kinda disappointing.
Anyway, congratulations to Rey Saludar (boxing), Biboy Rivera (bowling), Dennis Orcollo (cue sports) and the rest of Team Philippines, regardless if they brought home a medal or not, for putting up a good fight in Guangzhou. My hugs, kisses and salutations!