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(Photo from Instagram | @mannypacquiao)


MANILA — There is no doubt that Jeff Horn’s victory over Filipino boxing legend Manny Pacquiao served as a big boost to Queensland’s economy.


And a windfall, too, not only for that Australian State’s but also the whole of Australia’s tourism which is already basking in the glow of almost 17,000 out-of-state visitors who descended on Brisbane for the weekend when the two fighters crossed paths last July 2.


This was the consensus expressed by the host government’s officials, led by Brisbane City Mayor Graham Quirk, and even Top Tank Promotion bossman Bob Arum after Horn kept his undefeated record with a unanimous, albeit controversial, win before a 50,000 crowd at the Suncorp Arena.


 Arum was quoted by Australian media as saying the fight would bring boxing back to its rightful place in global sport. “It is a transformational fight for not only Australia but the world. Even before the historic encounter, it was booing under," he said.


Not only that, and this everybody in boxing world knows, because of the new World Boxing Organization welterweight crown owner, but also because of Pacquiao, who, in the first place, was chosen to dance with the former schoolteacher on the merit of his immense popularity and vast drawing power.


True it was Pacquiao, the only man in the universe to crown himself champion 11 times in eight weight division, who  sought that a rematch clause be part of the contract, but it is now this same clause that Horn’s camp is urging the Filipino to honor, not the other way around. Precisely because of the potential benefits the outcome of the bout would bring.


The Pacman was willing, and is, in fact, still willing to honor the rematch and fight Horn again next month – November 12 to be exact. 

But had, or has Horn and the Australian fight organizers accorded Pacquiao the respect he deserves owing to his status as a respected fighter and a high-ranking government official of his country -- a senator at that?


Never. From the time Manny and his party arrived in the host city, everything he got from whatever he did seemed to have not pass their criteria as they were met with ridicule and insult.


Like during the final pre-fight press conference when he kept using his mobile phone, everybody ganged up on him not realizing that as a lawmaker he had to monitor minute-by-minute what was happening in the country. 

When he left Manila, war had just erupted in Marawi City in Mindanao and a strong typhoon had hit his hometown General Santos City.


 During the victory parade after stashing away with the 147-pound belt, Horn poked fun at his victim to the delight of his fans.          


The WBO, despite early dilly-dallying, granted Pacquiao’s plea for a review of the judges’ questionable decision but came up approving the verdict via a seldom heard of point-system of scoring without considering that 55 of 67 booing writers polled after the fight voted that Manny was the clear winner.    


Many of those who participated in the survey expressed belief that the Filipino ring icon was robbed of victory.       


Then when Pacquiao looked to agree with going on with the rematch came Horn’s trainer Glenn Rushton saying his camp will request drug testing to ”level the playing field” because he was not satisfied with the drug-testing protocol applied in the first match.


And now that the cat is out that Manny has begged to move the rematch next year, Horn and his camp has started shopping for opponent which seems hardly to be  found.   


Which, according to one boxing writer is understandable. “Who,” he reported, “is a boxer in his right mind would agree to fly to Brisbane and be a victim of what Pacquiao suffered? “  


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(Photo from GMA News)


KUALA LUMPUR — Many Filipino Americans shined in the 29th Southeast Asian Games 2017 in Kuala Lumpur winning gold, silver and bronze medals.


New York's Trenten Anthony Beram, 21, a University of Connecticut mathematics major whose mother hails from Cebu, led the Filams with two gold medals in the men's 200 and 400 meters run.


Beram also won a bronze medal when their 400-meter relay team consisting of fellow Filipino American Eric Cray, and Anfernee Lopena and Archand Bagsit came in third behind Malaysia and Indonesia.


Cray, 28, who was born in Olongapo City, before moving to Sacramento, California with his parents, earlier won gold in the 400 meters hurdles and silver in 100 meters sprint.


Cray studied at the James Madison High School in San Antonio, Texas, has a degree in Education from Bethune-Cookman University and  a master's degree in Human Relations at the University of Oklahoma.


FilAm Kaitlin de Guzman, 17, of Rowlett, Texas and a member of the University of Oklahoma team, is the winningest woman athlete with a gold, silver and bronze in gymnasts.


Another FilAm, Samuel Thomas Harper Morrison, romped off with the gold in the taekwondo competition on Aug. 29.


Born in Olongapo City of an American serviceman father and Filipina mother, Morrison and family migrated to Maryland but returned to the Philippines when he was seven years old.


Now 27, Morrison, a graduate of rhe University of Sto. Tomas vowed to compete in the 2019 SEA Games which Manila will host.


Philippines Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano rallied Team Philippines seeing action in the 29th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games which the country will host in 2019.


Cayetano congratulated the victors as well as commended all Filipino athletes who gave all out their best for flag and country.

On Saturday, the Philippines routed the Indonesian five 94-55 and retained the basketball crown, which mattered most for Filipinos struggling to make the Big 5 among 11 nations in the games, raising the country's gold to 18.


Other Filipino Americans who shined in the games were fencing gold medalist Louie Wayne Brennan of California, gymnast gold, silver and bronze medalist Kaitlin de Guzman of Texas, only 17 years old, whose mother Cintamoni de Guzman was also a gymnast gold medalist in the 1995 SEA Games, swimmer silver and bronze medalist James Deiparine of Seattle, Washington but graduated from the California Polytechnic State University, golf bronze medalist Lois Kaye Go, 18,  who studies at Boston College, BMX cycling bronze medalist Daniel Caluag and swimmer Nicole Justine Marie Oliva.


On the same day, the Philippines collected three more golds two of which courtesy of the poomsae team in taekwondo and the third from judoka Miyoki Watanabe. 


The two-time poomsae champion team annexed its third straight crown while Watanabe, training her sights beyond the SEA Games, gained her third straight crown.


Also that day, Fil-American James Deiparine who topped the 50m breaststroke event in 28.20 seconds in the morning heats, clocked only 28.60 for the bronze behind defending champion Indra Gunawan of Indonesia in 28.25.


As of Saturday night (Aug. 26), the Philippines had a gold-silver-bronze medal tally of 18-24-45, not counting the gold-silver in the 9-ball women’s singles. The Philippines trailed Indonesia (31-43-52), Thailand (44-64-63), Singapore (46-35-52), Vietnam (49-34-43) and frontrunning Malaysia (82-58-53).


Brothers Dustin Jacob and Raphael Enrico Mella, who first won the gold in 2013 and in 2015, and this year in partnership with Rodolfo Reyes, scored an average of 3.40 in accuracy and 4.97 in presentation for a total of 8.37 in the men’s team poomsae to give the taekwondo team its first gold following the bronze medal win of the women’s team.


Reyes won the Philippines’ bronze in the men’s individual poomsae earlier.


The women’s team of Rinna Bananto, Juvenile Faye Crisostomo and Jocel Lyn Ninobla scored 8.27 for the bronze in the women’s event. 


Watanabe immediately threw her opponent to the ground, then pinned her down for 36 seconds to win the gold in the -63 kg class in women’s judo.


The win gave judo its first gold and one of many other international medals for the Filipino Olympian who is already being included by the Philippine Sports Commission in its program for the 2020 Olympics following her impressive bronze medal finish in the tough Tokyo International Judo Championships last July. 


Right after receiving the gold medal in the awarding ceremonies, she left the stadium and Malaysia to catch the first flight to the World Championships in Budapest.


Three silver and eight bronze medals were the other mints in the day following second place finishes by Anna Clarice Patrimonio in the women’s singles in tennis, the pair of Marcelito Pancho and Angelo Morales in men’s pair event in lawn bowls and the team of Sophia Joker Arroyo, Marie Antonette Leviste and Syquia Collins in the showjumping event of equestrian.


Asian Games champion Daniel Caluag, a Filipino American from California, lacking the training and preparation that earned him the gold in the quadrennial meet in 2014, settled for the bronze in BMX cycling. 


Athletics’ last bronze medals came from Kingsley Bautista in the 110 meter hurdles and the 4x400m relay. The fourth bronze came from Mark Griffin in waterski.


Jasmine Alkhaldi earned her fourth bronze medal, finishing with a time of 2:02:02 in the 200m freestyle.


The following is the official partial list of Filipino medal winners as of August 26:



1. Mary Joy Tabal (ATHLETICS -- Women’s marathon)

2. Nikko Huelgas (TRIATHLON -- Men’s Individual)

3. Marion Kim Mangrobang (TRIATHLON -- Women’s Individual )

4. Reyland Capellan (MEN'S ARTISTIC GYMNASTICS -- Floor Exercise)

5. Kaitlin Cera Lianne De Guzman (WOMEN'S GYMNASTICS -- Uneven Bars)

6. Agatha Chrystenzen Wong (WUSHU -- Tajiquan)

7. Louie Wayne Brennan (FENCING -- Men’s Foil Individual)

8. Eric Shauwn Cray (ATHLETICS – Men’s 400m Hurdles)

9. Aries Toledo (ATHLETICS – Men’s Decathlon)

10. Anthony Beram (ATHLETICS -- 200m)

11. Robert Curte Guarin/ Emmanuel Portacio/ Leoncio Carreon Jr./ Ronald Lising (LAWN BOWLS -- Men’s Four)

12. Felix Eumir Marcial (BOXING – Middleweight 75kg)

13. Marvin John Nobel Tupas (BOXING – Light Heavyweight 81kg)

14. Anthony Beram (ATHLETICS – 400m)

15. Men’s Team (ICE HOCKEY)



1. Alvin Pangan/ Joeart Jumawan/ John Jeffrey Morcillos/ John John Bobier/ Rhemwill Catana/ Ronsite Gabayeron/ Regie Rezna Pabrigas (SEPAK TAKRAW -- Men’s Chinlone event)

2. Nicole Tagle (ARCHERY -- Women’s Individual Recurve)

3. John Leerams Chicano (TRIATHLON – Men’s Individual)

4. Claire Adorna (TRIATHLON – Women’s Individual)

5. Agatha Chrystenzen Wong (WUSHU -- Women’s Optional Taijijan)

6. Samantha Catantan (FENCING – Women’s Foil Individual)

7. Nathaniel Perez (FENCING -- Men’s Foil Individual)

8. Haniel Abella (FENCING -- Women’s Epee Individual)

9. Jason Ramil Macaalay (KARATEDO -- Men’s Kumite below 60kg)

10. Rexor Romaquin Tacay (KARATEDO – Men’s Kumite below 67kg)

11. Eric Shauwn Cray (ATHLETICS -- Men’s 100m)

12. Kaitlin Cera Lianne De Guzman (GYMNASTICS -- Women's Artistic Floor Exercise)

13. John Paul Bejar (KARATEDO -- Male Kumite below 55kg)

14. Mark Harry Diones (ATHLETICS -- Men’s Triple Jump)

15. Marco Vilog (ATHLETICS -- Men’s 800m)

16. Mario Fernandez (BOXING – Bantamweight 56kg)

17. Women’s Four (LAWN BOWLS)

18. Jemyca Arebado/ Yvonne Alyssa Dalida (SQUASH – Women’s Jumbo Doubles)

19. Ruben Gonzales/Francis Alcantara (TENNIS -- Men’s Doubles)

20. Hazel Jagonoy/ Rosita Bradborn/ Vilma Greenlees (LAWN BOWLS -- Women’s Triples)

21. James Deiparine (SWIMMING – Men’s 100m Breaststroke)



1. Paul Marton Dela Cruz (ARCHERY -- Men’s Individual Compound)

2. Joseph Benjamin Vicencio (ARCHERY-- Men’s Team Compound)

    Paul Marton Dela Cruz (ARCHERY – Men’s Individual Team Compound)

4. Kareel Hongitan (ARCHERY -- Women’s Team Recurve)

    Mary Queen Ybanez (ARCHERY -- Women’s Team Recurve)

    Nicole Tagle (ARCHERY -- Women’s Team Recurve)

5. Florante Matan (ARCHERY -- Men’s Team Recurve)

6. Gabriel Moreno (ARCHERY -- Men’s Team Recurve)

7. Mark Javier (ARCHERY-- Men’s Team Recurve)

8. Mazine Esteban (FENCING --Women’s Foil Individual)

9. Rizzalyn Amolacion/ Mary Ann Lopez/ Jean Marie Sucalit/ Kristel Carloman/ Lhaima Lhiell Mangobat (SEPAK TAKRAW -- Women’s Regu)

10. James Orencio (KARATEDO -- Kata Individual)

11. Richard Gonzales (TABLE TENNIS -- Men’s Singles)

12. Harlene Raguin (FENCING -- Women’s Epee Individual)

13. Junna Tsukii (KARATEDO – Women’s Kumite below 50kg)

14. Roxanne Ashley Yu (SWIMMING – Women’s 200m Backstroke)

15. Evalyn Palabrica (ATHLETICS -- Women’s Javelin Throw)

16. Kaitlin Cera Lianne De Guzman (GYMNASTICS -- Women Balance Beam)

17. Reland Capellan (GYMNASTICS – Men Vault)

18. Mae Soriano (KARATEDO -- Women Kumite below 55kg)

19. Arniel Ferrera (ATHLETICS – Men’s Hammer Throw)



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(Photo from The Manila TImes)


MANILA — Another good news for Filipinos in sports.


The Philippines’ Carlo Biado on Saturday (July 30, Manila Time) won the gold in men’s pool finals, beating Great Britain Jayson Shaw, 11-7 to win the country's first gold in the World Games in Wroclaw, Poland.


Biado’s sterling performance gave the Philippines its first ever gold in the World Games, a world competition of non-olympic games held every four years, according to Robert Manaquil, secretary general of the local billiard-snooker association and media officer of the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC).


Dennis Orcullo gave the Philippines its lone medal in the world games by winning the bronze in the 9-ball pool in 2014 in Cali, Columbia.


Earlier in the day, Biado, demonstrated mental toughness and steady form and defeated Oi Naoyuki of Japan, in a masterful, 11-7, in the first semi finals match to face Jayson, who won over Taipei’s Ko Pin Yi in other semis, 11-4, in the finals of the 9-ball tussle.


Chezka Centeno lost her play off for bronze to China’s Han Yu, 9-3 in the women’s pool. Earlier, Centeno was defeated in the finals by Chen Siming of China, 6-9. 


Chezka Centeno tumbled out of the medal podium following a 9-3 defeat at the hands of China’s Han Yu during their playoff for the bronze.


The 18-year-old from Zamboanga City who won the women’s 9-ball gold in the 2015 World Games held in Shanghai, China lost to Siming earlier in the semifinals.


Biado, who briefly ranked No.1 in the world two years ago, and the seventh-ranked Centeno formed part of the eight players from Asia who made it to the world games based on their world rankings.


Biado and Centeno are part of the eight players from Asia-composed of four men players from Taipei, China and Japan and four women from Taipei, Korea and Japan-qualified to compete in the world games based on their world rankings.


The two Filipino cue artists will spearhead the 11-man billiard sports in the 29th Southeast Asian Games in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia next month.


Biado and Centeno will defend their titles in the 9-ball pool. 

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(Photo from Instagram | @mannypacquiao)


MANILA — Now it can be told that Australian Jeff Horn really won the "Battle of Brisbane" last July 2.

This as the World Boxing Organization (WBO), after review of the fight of Horn with world boxing icon and Philippine Senator Emmanuel "Manny " Pacquiao, affirmed the Australian slugger's victory.


In a statement reported by Agence France Presse, the WBO stated: "Upon the analysis, the findings stated that Pacquiao won the 3rd, the 8th and 9th by 100 percent; the 5th round was won by 80 percent; and the 11th round by 60 percent."


"Horn won the 1st, 6th and 12th rounds by 100 percent; rounds 2, 4, and 7 by 80 percent; and then, the 10th round by 60 percent," WBO stated.


"From the results, it can be established that Pacquiao won five rounds while Horn won seven rounds. Based on this analysis, Jeff Horn was the winner of the bout," WBO concluded in the statement.


There was no immediate response from Senator Pacquiao and Team Pacquiao.


But Top Rank's Bob Arum, in a television interview on GMA, claimed that the WBO review did not settle anything, but showed that the Horn-Pacquiao battle "was a close fight."


"Well it doesn't settle anything. It was a very close fight. It could have been scored either way. I had Manny winning the fight by one point, but you know when it gets that close, the fight can go either way," Arum said on GMA news.


"First of all they didn't [rule] that Jeff Horn clearly won the fight. They (WBO) had five judges scoring the fight: three had Horn winning narrowly, one had it at draw, one had Pacquiao winning," Arum told the network in live interview.


Despite his statements, Arum said Pacquiao should accept the decision and "move on."


"Manny has to decide what he wants to do in the future and we'll take it from there," he said.


Arum said that after two weeks, he may travel to the Philippines to determine from Pacquiao himself if he would want a rematch with Horn.


"I will see whether he really wants to do a rematch, whether he wants to continue boxing, or whether because of his senatorial duty, he is unable to continue," he said.


Arum said he would support any Pacquiao-Horn rematch, especially if Pacquiao decides later to fight Horn again.


Arum said a decision is a decision and all must respect the decision.


Horn's father, Jeff Horn Sr., in another GMA New interview, welcome the WBO review decision made by five judges or boxing experts.


He said that despite the pronouncements of Pacquiao regarding the outcome of the fight, their camp respects the Filipino as a boxer.


"Manny Pacquiao is just a great warrior and we respect him tremendously for what he has achieved in boxing," he said.


He said Pacquiao was a "great warrior" and "respect him" especially for his achievements in boxing.


Horn Sr. said he supports a rematch of his son with Pacquiao, saying Pacquiao is a natural welterweight.


He assured that his son, who is now the wBO welterweight title holder, will be more than 20 percent better for the rematch.


The review was sought by many and supported even by the Philippines' sports agency, the Games and Amusement Board (GAB).

The WBO was triggered by claims by many, including Pacquiao, that the results could have gone the other way or a draw at best .


Horn stunned the Filipino legend—who has won world titles in an unprecedented eight weight divisions—with his ultra-aggressiveness to earn a unanimous 12-round decision.


The WBO—which does not have the power to reverse a decision unless fraud or law violations are proven—set up a panel of five independent judges who were asked to watch the bout without sound and determine who won each round.


The results were tabulated to show clearly the rounds each fighter won using an average scale based on 60, 80 and 100 percent, with three of the five officials needing to be in agreement, AFP reported.


Earlier, the Philippines' Games and Amusements Board (GAB) welcomed the World Boxing Organization (WBO) decision to review the fight.


“It’s good that WBO has acted on our request for review,” said GAB Chairman Abraham Kahlil “Baham” Mitra.

Pacquiao lost his WBO world welterweight title to Horn by a unanimous decision from the three judges -- Waleska Roldan (117-111), Chris Flores (1150-113) and Ramon Cerdan (115-113).


"I assure you that the Officials who participated in this fight are all professional, distinguished, honest and honorable human beings," said Varcarcel.


Valcarcel, however, said that "WBO does not have jurisdiction in the first instance to revoke any decision, as that would correspond to the Australian National Boxing Federation."


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Lead Warriors ace player Steph Curry hoists the 2017 NBA Championship trophy won by his team the Golden State Warriors from the Cleveland Cavaliers.


OAKLAND — Fans and supporters of the National Basketball Association (NBA) 2017 Champion Golden State Warriors were transformed to a sea of humanity when they  flooded the major streets of Oakland City as the city honored the cagers with the team’s victory parade and rally after trouncing the Cleveland Cavaliers.


Under the searing heat of the sun in a glorious day, the estimated crowd of about 500,000 to 1 million men and women, from as young as two months old to those in their 80s, in all forms and shapes of different races and colors packed patiently the parade route and the rally venue at the Henry J. Kaiser Convention Center with children playing cards, people dancing to the beat of the music playing while still others ate food and drank water as they await the parade to pass in front of them.


Some celebrities spotted in the parade held on June 12 aside from the Warriors players and front office top officials and staff were City Mayors Ed Lee of San Francisco and Libby Schaaf of Oakland and California State Assemblymember Rob Bonta.


Many Fil-Ams like San Jose executive execuive Anthony Rivero also joined the celebration and parade. 

“I am here to support the Warriors who have something special because they bring the community together whether you are from Oakland, San Jose or from San Francisco as much as they play with teamwork in mind. It is the one key thing we can learn from the Warriors and let my kids here with me learn that perseverance and teamwork wins in the end early on in life,” Rivero shared.



South San Francisco Warriors diehard Maria del Mundo-Ingco (right) spent quality bonding time with daughter Lexy (left) when they watched the championship game the Warriors had with the Cavaliers.


Probably one of the oldest Filipinos in the parade, Sam Mendoza, 74, from Dagupan Pangasinan and Alameda City, still walks five miles a day to keep fit. He came to the celebration with grandsons.


“Kevin Durant was a big help in both offense and defence for the Warriors this year. If he did not transfer, the Warriors may have had a harder time to win. I had no doubt we will win even after the fourth game loss,” Mendoza considered. “If players stay with the Warriors and not transfer to other teams, we may stay champions for a long time.”


South San Francisco Warriors diehard Maria del Mundo-Ingco always had watching Warriors game, either on TV or at the Oracle Arena, as a quality bonding time with daughter Lexy.



A close family friend brought along this poster of Kimberly Nuestro, a ardent fan of Steph Curry and the Warriors who mysteriously died last month during a basketball game in Santa Clara. Dad Ramir is certain that Kimberly is very happy with the Warriors winning the NBA championship.


“Last summer, Durant knew that he may serve as the missing piece to the puzzle after a heartbreaking loss last year. And he definitely is - on and off the court. Our guys have a lot of passion and he brings even more of it. It's so transparent how much he loves the game and he works hard to achieve his goals. He fits in with the team (and the Bay Area) seamlessly; it's just so fun to watch! I really hope he retires with the Warriors, he's an exceptional player,” del Mundo-Ingco noted. “It was just the cherry on top of an amazing season to win the title on our home court. I was there at Oracle that night and it was electric. Seeing my daughter with tears in her eyes when KD was announced as the MVP (who she's been a fan of even when he wasn't on our team) was really special.”


Eugene dela Cruz of Pleasant Hill, who also came with wife Cathy, daughter Angel and a son at the 2015 victory parade, was optimistic that the Warriors will regain the championship this year with eventual Finals Most Valuable Player (MVP) Kevin Durant who solidified Warriors’ claim to history.


“Kevin Durant has a huge impact guarding Lebron James, becoming the focal point of the Warriors. He is the go-to-guy and also freed up Curry to do what he had to do. I did not think they will have a repeat lost of the championship just like last year. I expected a good game from the Cavaliers as they were champions too. They are going to come up fighting as what top athletes do,” dela Cruz believes.


Gladys Salenga of Richmond who works at an office in downtown Oakland was somewhat disappointed together with co-workers that they had to do their celebration within their office room looking down at the parade grounds.


“It is each of these hardworking Warrior talents that was the key in becoming the NBA 2017 champs! The 3-0 was a sign to bring out the Broom (sweep) however I loved the fact that the win game was at home. Was that intentional? I don't know but it makes winning much sweeter and special,” Salenga mused.


Speaking for his daughter Kimberly Nuestro, an ardent fan and follower of Steph Curry, dad Ramir Nuestro intimated that Kimberly became more excited when Durant went to Warriors and was sure that the Warriors will be champions again.


“She told me before she died that the Warriors will be 16-0 in the playoffs and the finals. She was also certain that Durant will be the finals MVP. I don't know if is coincidence that Kimberly turned 16 on April 21 and after 16 days she died,” Ramir curiously pointed out on the role of number 16 in Kimberly’s last days. “And on this day of the Warriors victory parade that falls on Kimberly's 40th day, our family thanks the Warriors for winning the championship. My daughter will be so happy right now in heaven, I just wish I could bring her back to life to celebrate the championship with us. Again thanks to Steph for signing my daughter’s shoes.”

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(Photo from Instagram | @mannypacquiao)


GENERAL SANTOS CITY/MANILA — If 2016 is to LeBron James of the NBA champions Cleveland Cavaliers, year 2017 could be to Kevin Durant of the Golden State Warriors.   


This was the consensus gathered from those who believe the Warriors, with Durant reinforcing the 2016 runners up this time, have what it takes to avenge the setback they suffered a year ago and bring back the much-coveted championship the Cavs deprived them that season.      


World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao,  former senator and local basketball's 'living legend' Robert “Sonny” Jaworski Sr., fellow PBA greats Bogs Adornado, Atoy  Co and Philip Cezar and ex-Philippine Youth Team standout Danny Francisco were one in projecting  that Durant could be the key to Warriors’ title win this season.


“Other than the fact than the Warriors continue to command the biggest Filipino followers of the NBA in the U.S., the addition of Durant represents yet the biggest boost to their winning this year,” Pacquiao told this writer in an interview during a lull in his training.  

Pacquiao, who was among those Spin.Ph and PhilAmPress interviewed in a survey conducted early this week, is currently in deep training for his coming title fight with Jeff Horn of Australia scheduled on July 2 in Brisbane.     


“That is why lalo akong naniniwala  na kayang ibalik ng GSW ang kampeonato ng NBA sa Bay Area. Isang napakalaking tulong ang magagawa ni Durant para sa Warriors. Isa rin siyang dating MVP, so dalawa na sila ni Steph (Curry) na magtutulong) for the Warriors to wi their third championship in three years,” the eight-division titlist reasoned out.   


"Of course, idagdag natin ang milyon-milyong Pilipino, both in  the U.S, at maging dito sa Pilipinas na nagdadasal na manalo ang Warriors,” he  added. "Understandable  naman yun na  maraming Pilipino na lokong-loko sa basketbol ang pinasasasaya ang Warriors kapag nanalo sila.”


Pacquiao has established a closed friendship with Curry who, at one time or another visited him while training at trainer Freddie Roach-owned Wild Card Gym in Los Angeles.


Jaworski, former playing-coach of Ginebra San Miguel in the  PBA, agreed, saying,  “Inspite of the Cav's complete and healthy lineup, I pick GSW to win.  The Warriors have shown their commitment to win by the consistent decorum of team members, from the coaches, players and staff in every game."


"Other than their key players Curry, (Klay) Thompson, (Draymond) Green and, of course, Durant, expect to see their teammates  (Andre) Igodoula, (Dave) West, Shaun Livingston and others to show the exemplary attitude, desire, team pride, mental toughness and philosophy they've been displaying from the elimination round to the playoffs," Jaworski observed.  


Which was exactly what the Warriors just did in the opening game of their best-of-seven championship title series Friday at their home turf Oracle Arena where they routed the Cavs, 119-91, serving notice of what to come next time around.


Barring any major injury to the Warriors, Jaworski, the "Big J," or "Jawo" to fans, believe Golden State will settle the issue in six or seven games.


To which former Crispa teammates Adornado, Co and Cezar, Francisco, fellow former national  player Jimmy Mariano and Zaldy Realubit,  current PBA mainstays Arwind Santos and Ranidel de Ocampo, Rain Or Shine co-owners Raymund Yu and Terry Que and Team MaHindra assistant coach Chris Gavina concurred in


Coach Gavina, for his part, said: “While I feel like Lebron simply played at an unbelievable level last year being on a mission to bringing Cleveland their first championship, I feel that same level of urgency from Kevin Durant this year. I think his  previous past setbacks has ignited his inner fire for greatness.  I say it goes to 7 games with Warriors winning an epic 4-3 series.”


Pacquiao’s chief trainer Freddie Roach and other members of Team Pacquiao Spin.Ph interviwed also expressed belief the Warriors will prevail. They included the champ’s younger brother Bobby Pacquiao, assistant trainer Buboy Fernandez and Jake Joson.       


Incidentally, only five of those interviewed believed James and the Cavaliers will take the measure of the Warriors.


And all of them are members of Team Pacquiao – Mahindra assistant team manager Joe Ramos, Senate staff members Choi Garcia, David Sisson, Carlo Gragasin and Johnny Bantilan. (Eddie G. Alinea/Spin.Ph/PhilAmPress)

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Photos by Wendell Alinea/OSMP


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Photo from Facebook | @MannyPacquiao


PASAY CITY (via PhilAmPress)  World Boxing Organization welterweight crown-holder Manny Pacquiao would have wanted to surprise his Hall of Fame chief trainer Freddie Roach during their first workout Monday by asking for a 12-round session with the mitts.


Roach, the only seven-time Trainer of the Year honoree of the Boxing Writers Association of America, would have normally start with five or, the most, six rounds. He readily acceded though to his ward of 14 years wish though.


And the most successful boxer-trainer tandem in the business went on doing what Pacquiao wished for with Roach simply  saying “good start” after a dozen round of absorbing the title defender’s best shots plus 12 rounds more elsewhere at the Elorde Gym in Pasay City.


All-in-all, the most decorated fighter in the world, completed 24 rounds of sweating it out that day, including the 12 rounds with the heavy bag, double end and speed balls, ropes and shadow boxing.


 A 30-minute stamina-building abdominal exercises under the watch of strength and conditioning coach Justin Fortune ended  the day’s routine.


“No, not really,” Pacquiao told ths writer when asked after the relatively two-hour job. “Kilalang kilala na ako ni Freddie para ma-sorpresa ko pa sya. He wasn’t even impressed. Kita naman nyo sa mga mata nya at body language nya.”


Pacquiao said Roach and Fortune’s arrival meant his preparation for his title fight with Australian challenger Jeff Horn has started in earnest. “Tuloy-tuloy na ito, the next seven weeks will be very busy na for all of us,” he pointed out. “Hindi naman ang ibig sabihin ay hind tayo naging seryoso the past two weeks.”


“That’s the reason nga why hindi na na-surprise nor na-impress si Freddie. Kasi alam nya na bago pa lang sya dumating dito sa Maynila ay nakahanda na ako sa anumang training regimen he has prepared for me,” Pacquiao explained. 


Assistant trainers, brothers Buboy and Roger “Haplas” Fernandez, who have been overseeing the preparations since the camp was set up last May 8, agreed.


“The instructions of coach Freddie were very clear when we pitched camp last month. Give Manny the best possible training we could so that pagdating nya, handa na si Manny sa anumang susunod na mabibigat na bahagi ng program,” Buboy disclosed.


“And that’s exactly what we did. At kapag gusto niyang magpahing, binibigyn namin ng rest. Remember, he’s doubling as a public servant, a job na kailangan pagtuunan din ng pansin at malaking oras kaya hindi na kadali mag-juggle nt time,” Pacquiao’s boyhood pal said.


The sparring portion of the build up program was started Saturday last week with locally-ranked  junior-welterweights Leopoldo Doronio and Fil-Indonesian Sonny Katiandagho earning anew the honor of giving Pacquiao the feel of fighting atop the ring until the time when Roach’s choice comes asround.    


 Doronio and Katiandagho, whose father is a long-time Philippine-based Indonesian, did the job, too, last year when the Pambansang Kamao was preparing for the then 147-pound titleholder Jessie Vargas. He joined the confrontation earlier to wrest back the belt he lost to arch-rival Floyd Mayweather Jr. in 2015.     

“I did good in my first day of sparring. But I need to push myself hard because I know my opponent is also training very hard,” Pacquiao said after his sparring sessions.


Each sparring session with the two boxers lasted for two rounds. And the two younger boxers were still amazed with the power and speed of the 38-year old Filipino ring icon.


“He is still the boxer that really hard to hit because he’s too fast,” said Doronio.


 “I was hit many times. I expect him to become faster and stronger in the next few days especially on his fifth day of sparring,” added Doronio.


The 24-year old Katiandagho was left impressed after the two-round session.


“At his age, he is faster, wiser and stronger than me. I’m just 24 and he’s over 30 but he has more power and stamina than me,” said Katiandagho. “I did my best to outsmart him but I couldn’t. He is very unpredictable also and he is on a different level.”


After the sparring session, Pacquiao spent three more hours for pad work, speed ball, heavy bag and plyometric to end his training.


Manny’s fine-tuning regimen shifted to high-gear starting Monday with the arrival of chief trainer Freddie Roach, the man who guided him from an obscure junior-flyweight campaigner to a world champion in eight weight divisions.  


Roach flew in from Los Angeles last Sunday morning and promptly took over running  the fighting Senator’s training for his title fight with Australian contender Jeff Horn on July 2 in Brisbane, Australia.


Roach came in with strength and conditioning coach Justin Fortune in tow at a time when the defending World Boxing Organization welterweight belt-owner had completed his initial two weeks of light preparations that started last May 8.


Pacquiao, now 38 and the nine-year his junior former schoolteacher crown  pretender Jeff Horn trade punches on July  2 at the 55,000 Suncorp Arena at the Queensland capital city of Brisbane in a fight billed as the biggest boxing event Down Under.


 Pacquiao and the Hall of Fame trainer will be celebrating his and Pacquiao’s successful 16-year trainer-boxer relationship on June 23, a little over a week before the Pacquiao-Horn 12-round scrap.


It was on June 23, 2001 when Pacquiao, the former two-time Sarangani congressman first fought in the United States under the tutelage of Roach as a substitute challenger against South African Lehlo Ledwaba whom he forced to surrender after six rounds to win the International Boxing Federation super-bantamweight championship, his second following his reign as Wold Boxing Council flyweight titlist.


“Okay na, ready na si Manny to go into the tougher stage of preparations,” Buboy said as he and Haplas prepared for their boyhood friend’s  training session y at the Elorde Gym at the Mall of Asia compound in Pasay City.


“With the rust brought about by six months of ring inactivity gone and a little of his speed and punching power recovered, we can now move towards the more rigid phase of the program,” Buboy disclosed.


“Ibig sabihin, simula sa Lunes, we will be concentrating on improving the gains we have achieved the past two weeks in  terms of conditioning, ad ringmanship,” Buboy stressed.


Buboy said after next week, as the Senate goes into recess, the frequency will be harder and longer until the team leaves for Brisbane probably two weeks before the bout.


“With coach Freddie here, tigil na muna ang basketball, pagpupuyat at pag-attend sa kung ano-anong  social functions, “ he added. “Except, of course, those in relation with his duties as a senator.” (Eddie G. Alinea/PhilAmPress)    

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Photo from Philippine Daily Inquirer


TOKYO — Filipino boxer Milan Melindo finally got a world championship belt after three attempts, becoming the fourth Filipino current world boxing title holder.


In his third attempt last week, Melindo knocked out defending regular IBF light flyweight world champion Akira Yaegashi in just one round last Sunday at the Ariake Coliseum in Tokyo, Japan to get the world title. 


Melindo, who came into the fight as the interim IBF 108-pound champion,  dropped Yaegashi twice in the first round before landing a vicious 1-2 combination that sent the hometown boy down to the mat for a third time. 


Yaegashi could barely sit back up as the referee waved off the fight at the 2:45 mark of round one.


Melindo, 29, fought for a world title two times earlier, falling short both times. 


Last November, Melindo earned the right to challenge Yaegashi after defeating Fahlan Sakkreerin Jr. to claim the interim belt. 


Melindo (36-2, 13 KO) joins Jerwin Ancajas (IBF junior bantamweight), ALA Boxing teammate Donnie Nietes (IBF flyweight), and Manny Pacquiao (WBO welterweight) as the only current Filipino boxing world champions.

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(Photo from Instagram | @mannypacquiao)


MAKATI CITY (PhilAmPress) – Philippine Senator and World Boxing Organization (WBO) reigning welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao is back in Manila from Melbourne where he drummed up his July 2 fight againt Australia’s Jeff Horn.


Immediately, Pacquiao announced his readiness to prepare for his coming titular date with Horn at Brisbane’s 55,000-seat Suncorp Arena and vowed to train harder than before, admitting his Australian foe should not be taken for granted.


“Everything went well (in the Australian trip). Finally Horn and I met for the first time and it’s now time to prepare for the fight, “ Pacquiao declared after landing at the airport with his party, including wife Jinkee.


“Medyo magiging hard and rigid ang training ngayon. Malaki and kalaban at kung totoo ang balitang natanggap natin from members of the Filipino community down Under and the Australians themselves, Horn should not be taken for granted,” Pacquiao stressed.


“May kalakihan nga, pero  bahagya lang at walang masyadong magiging advantage,” Pacman’s closed in security Choy  Garcia,  along with assistant trainer Roger “Haplas” Fernandez agreed having been part of the team that went to Australia.


“Pero kailangan ding paghandaang mabuti,” Garcia added.   


The fighting senator admitted that he is already in the twilight of his career. “Tanggap ko yun. Kaya nga hindi ako dapat matalo sa labang ito,” he stressed. “Paghaahandaan ko ang labang ito nang higit sa paghahandang  ginawa ko sa mga nakaraang laban ko,” Pacquiao said.


“I only have a few more fights left in my career at gaya nang dati, wala kong maipangangako kundi ang gagawin ko ang lahat para pasayahin ang fans. Kaya hindi ako papayag na matalo ako dito sa labang ito at sa mga darating pa,” he said.


Training will definitely start next week, the reigning 147-pound kingpin assured adding he cannot ascertain yet when he will plunge into action.


Since Senate session resumed on Tuesday (May 2), gym work may commence midweek, according to the eight division titlist.


“I am still waiting the report on the extent of damage brought about by the earthquake that hit GenSan (General Santos City). Kararating lang kasi namin hatinggabi kagabi, kaya di pa ako nakatatanggap ng report, “ the 38-year-old lawmaker said.


“Kung malaki ang naging pinsala at kailangan kong pumunta doon bago magsimula ang ensayo, lilipad tayo,” he said. “Kung minimal lamang naman, siguro the weekend after preparation ako bibisita,” he asserted.


 Haplas said his Boss and members  of the training team, including brother Buboy, Nono Neri and himself will meet to decide when Pacquiao’s build up program will commence.


“Monday pa ang dating ni Buboy from Bicol kaya noon pa lamang mapag-dedesisyunan ang araw kung kailan kami mag-start.” he said. “Meanwhile, resume na rin ang roadwork bukas (Sunday). “One week kasing di nakatakbo si Boss habang nasa Australia.”     


Like Garcia, Haplas dimissed Horn’s  perceived edge in height. “Matangkad lang, pero hindi naman hefty gaya ng report. Para lang si Vargas,” he said referring to the Mexican-American  Jessie Vagas, at whose expense Pacquiao took the title last November.


 On February 11, 1990, Buster Douglas, a 42-1 underdog,  knocked out heavily favoured Mike Tyson in the 10th round of their world heavyweight fight in Tokyo to crown himself the new champion.


On February 11, 1990, Buster Douglas, a 42-1 underdog,  knocked out heavily favoured Mike Tyson in the 10th round of their world heavyweight fight in Tokyo to crown himself the new champion.   


Twenty six years eerlier in 1964, Cassius Clay, (later christened Muhammad Ali), an 8-1 underdog,  knocked out  Sonny Liston in a monumental upset noted more for its historical significance than anything else.  


Those were only two of shocking reversals, not only in the sport of sweet science but in other sports a well, that left fans thrilled and excited and will  inspire and motivate the unheralded upstarts to hope to duplicate.


Australian no. 2 contender Jeff Horn is no exception. The former schoolteacher, in fact, has been very vocal since his title encounter with titlist Manny Pacquiao  was announced, to exploit the historical facts to the hilt and beat the Filipino World Boxing Organization welterweight  titleholder in  their July 2 date and emerge the new 147-pound champ.


To accomplish his goal, the 16-0-1 win-loss-draw record holder with 11 KOs knows too well that he needs more than luck because his 22-year veteran opponent also owns a piece of  history in his 59-6-2 with 38  stoppage impressive resume making Pacquiao an overwhelming favourite. 


Overcoming an underdog tag is not new to Paquiao. On the way to becoming the only boxer to win 11 world titles in eight weight divisions, the two-time Philippine Congressman now Senator started his rise to international prominence by crowning himself the International Boxing Federation super-bantamweight  titlist by stopping Lehlo Ledwaba in the sixth round while fighting as a substitute and, therefore, an underdog.  That was in 2001.


The 2000 ‘Fighter of the Decade,’ was, likewise, at the losing end of the odds when he overwhelmed Marco Antonio Barrera for the Ring Magazine featherweight plum, Juan Manuel Marquez for the World Boxing Council super-featherweight crown and David Diaz for the WBC lightweight diadem.


Ditto when he fought his first 147-pound bout against Olympian and legendary Mexican-American Oscar DeLa Hoya who was heavily favoured  when they met on December 8, 2008 only to quit and retire unable to answer the bell signalling the start of the 8th of the 12-round classic.


Having been a victim himself of upset losses, Pacquiao, also popularly known as “Pacman,” the “Pacific Storm” and “Mexicutioner,” among others, said he’s aware of those chances happening in his coming fight.


“Na-realize ko na ‘yan noon pang pumayag ako na labanan si Jeff Horn,” Pacquiao said. “Oo nga’t marami akong tinalo bilang underdog, may mga laban din naman ako na natalo as a favourite.”


The three-time WBO welterweight belt owner was referring to his first defeat in a young career in 1998, a KO at that, dealt him by Rustico Torrecampo and, three years later, by Thai Medgoen Lukchaopormasak that cost him the WBC flyweight title he won earlier from another, Thai Chatsai Sasakul.


“Those twin losses hurt, especially yung kay Medgoen kasi world champion na ako. But those defeats, at the same time, taught me lessons,” he reminisced. “After that, pinangako ko na di na ako dapat matalo, especially sa isang baguhan.”    


The Filipino ring great suffered three more setbacks later in his career – to Erik Morales in 2005, Tim Bradley and Marquez, both in 2012. He more than avenged his loss to Morales by knocking him out twice. Same with Bradley, who he outpointed two times later. That loss to Marquez, via KO,  merely brought their four-fight record to 2-1-1 win-loss-draw in his favour. (Eddie G. Alinea/PhilAmPress)

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