Thanks to Manny Pacquiao
Philippine Day in Macau: November 24, 2013
By Apolinario Villalobos
Once again, we Filipinos, proved that we are a people worthy of significant consideration, thanks to Manny Pacquiao. When hecklers thought that Manny Pacquiao is done with his two consecutive defeats, hence, no longer deserving another curious glance, his bout with Rios in Macau on November 24, 2013, proved them wrong. The glitters of the venue in Macau, casino haven of Asia was enhanced by the presence of Pacquiao’s Hollywood fans and well known boxers who etched their own names in the historical records of this sport industry.
For the first time in boxing industry, a lone singer sang the national anthems of the two pugilists, one a US citizen, though a Mexican by ancestry, and the other one, a Filipino No less than the equally international singing sensation Jessica Sanchez rendered the two anthems. Incidentally, although, Jessica’ mother is a Filipina she also has a Mexican blood.
Always a gentleman, Pacquiao never minced a single word of hatred against Rios. His statements are replete with his reminder that boxing is just a sport, profuse thanks to God for giving him strength, and heartfelt dedication of his quest to the “families and people who are victims of the typhoon Yolanda”. All these, he spiced with a promise to the victims that he will be with them soonest as he comes home.
This time, Pacquiao, though with still utmost humility, said that he considers himself as a blessing by God to the Pilippines and the Filipino people. He is right, with all the honors that he brought home. In all his fights, he always showed to the people that he owes everything to God and he emphasizes that he is proud to be a Filipino. How many Filipino athletes are doing that?
In his own way, Pacquiao has welded the Filipinos into one proud Asian race. Though not strongly spoken he is also trying to change the attitude of both the boxers and fans by advocating sportsmanship. How can then, hecklers conceive him as “corny” every time he pray before his fight and in diligently- learned English, express his desire for universal love and understanding?