Advertisements


Polish knockout artist living MMA dream in Brave CF

All Polish power-hitter Maciej “Magic Man” Gierszewski ever wanted to do in the prime years of his existence was to become a professional mixed martial arts (MMA) athlete. From the moment he had his first glimpse of the sport’s enthralling nature, Gierszewski fell in love so hard with MMA and vowed to be a competitor […] The post Polish knockout artist living MMA dream in Brave CF appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource: tribune tribuneMay 17th, 2021

Rolando Dy named BRAVE CF Fighter of the Year

The key to Dy’s meteoric rise was his decision to move up to lightweight from featherweight and disposed of Polish knockout artist Maciek Gierszewski at Brave CF 42 last September and 2019 Combat CF Breakout Fighter of the Year John Brewin in Brave CF 44 two months later......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsDec 23rd, 2020

WHAT IF: Eduard Folayang had stopped Eddie Alvarez back in 2019?

In August of 2019, the Mall of Asia Arena in Metro Manila played host to arguably one of the biggest matches in ONE Championship lightweight history.  In one corner was Filipino mixed martial arts icon and hometown favorite Eduard “The Landslide” Folayang, a two-time ONE Lightweight World Champion who was looking to bounce back after dropping the title to Japanese legend Shinya Aoki in Japan earlier that year.  Standing in the opposite corner was American star Eddie “The Underground King” Alvarez, a former UFC and Bellator Lightweight Champion and one of ONE’s biggest acquisitions in recent memory. Like Folayang, Alvarez was also looking to get back on track after a disappointing KO loss to Timofey Nastyukhin in his ONE debut.  Considered a dream match by ONE Championship fans, Folayang versus Alvarez was billed as East versus West. One of ONE’s pioneers against one of ONE’s newest stars.  As much as the storylines made the match very intriguing, the stakes were quite high as well.  With the semifinals of the then-ongoing ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix doomed by injuries, the Folayang-Alvarez bout was elevated to Grand Prix semifinals status, meaning that the winner would go on to face Turkish knockout artist Saygid “Dagi” Guseyn Arslanaliev in the Finals at ONE: CENTURY.  For Folayang, it was a step towards reclaiming the title that he held at the start of the year. For Alvarez, it was a way to erase the memory of his bitter debut loss and also a step closer towards capturing his third major world championship.  While the Folayang-Alvarez was the third-to-the last bout on the bill, for many of the Pinoy fans in attendance at the MOA Arena that night, it sure felt like the main event.  From the opening bell, the crowd was buzzing, anxious to see of their hometown hero could pull off the massive victory.  Chants of “Folayang! Folayang!” rang through MoA Arena just seconds before the Pinoy connected on a solid counter left hook that definitely got the American star’s attention.  After a flurry of kicks from Folayang, the briefly fell into a nervous silence as Alvarez caught a leg kick and managed to get Folayang to the ground before trapping him in a standing guillotine.  Folayang simply shrugged off the half-hearted submission attempt, much to the delight of the partisan-Pinoy crowd. So far so good for Team Philippines.  A flying knee from Alvarez collided with a spinning back kick from Folayang, which elicited some oohs and ahhs from the crowd, which was ready to go off as soon as their bet landed something big.  Folayang began to pick up steam as he launched strike after strike, throwing kicks, punches, and elbows. It was clear that the Team Lakay star was in control of the stand-up aspect of the fight.  Then, at the 3:37 mark of the first round, the big strike that the fans were waiting for finally came. Folayang, with his massive tree-trunk legs, whipped a right low kick that connected on Alvarez’s left leg, sending the American down to the mat. The way Alvarez sat back down, it looked like he was hurt.  Sensing blood in the water, Folayang went for the kill and began dropping fists as Alvarez tried to defend himself. A failed armbar attempt from Alvarez forced Folayang to reposition himself, moving into side control while still throwing hammerfist after hammerfist.  Then, all of a sudden, Alvarez managed to slip his right hand in between Folayang’s legs and then flip the Pinoy over. Just like that, it was Alvarez who was on top.  Unlike his Pinoy opponent however, Alvarez remained calm and slowly transitioned into full mount. Making things worse, Folayang, likely looking to prevent and ground and pound damage, turned and gave up his back.  Almost immediately, Alvarez sinked his hooks in and flattened Folayang out before locking in a rear naked choke and forcing the Pinoy to tap out.  While he did win, Alvarez would miss out on the Finals anyway after an injury would force him to withdraw as well. As a result, Dagi ended up facing - and losing to - reigning ONE Lightweight World Champion Christian Lee.  Folayang was offered the Finals spot against Dagi, but last-minute visa issues would prevent him from being able to step up.  The loss was quite a painful one to swallow, not just for Folayang, but also for the fans.  Folayang admitted after the fight that he had rushed to get the finish, causing him to be a bit careless and make some costly mistakes.  "I was too eager to get the finish, and I think that’s the mistake, I became impatient, and I wanted to finish him as soon as possible but it didn’t go that way, so, that happened," Folayang explained.  But WHAT IF Folayang hadn’t rushed? Close your eyes and imagine:  After chopping Alvarez down with the leg kick at the 3:37 mark, Folayang pounced and picked his spots, landing some good shots to the head, enough to stun the American and force the referee to step in and stop the fight.  Or, what if instead of pouncing, Folayang allowed the visibly hurt Alvarez to get back up and from there, continued to punish The Underground King’s leg (or legs) en route to a TKO finish.  Folayang would have booked his ticked to the ONE Lightweight Grand Prix Finals. More importantly, Folayang would have been able to add Alvarez to the name of legend’s he’s beaten, and it would have skyrocketed his stock to even greater heights.  Would he have been able to defeat Dagi in the Finale? Of course it was very much possible. At the rate Dagi was knocking guys out up to that point, Folayang would have likely been considered an underdog, but a high-level striker like Folayang is never without his chances.  If Folayang had been able to get past Dagi as well, it would set up a very intriguing matchup between himself and Lee, which could have been a good matchup for the Pinoy star.  Now, Folayang finds himself once again looking to bounce back following a close loss to Dutch striker Pieter Buist.  Still hungry for a third run as world champion, Folayang will need to work his way back to the top of the division.  Who knows? Maybe two or three wins in, Folayang could find himself standing opposite Alvarez once again, with the chance to re-write history. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 27th, 2020

Pinoy artist breaks records at Christie s auction despite pandemic

Ronald Ventura's "Party Animal" is said to be the highest price paid for an artwork done by a living Filipino artist......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsMay 28th, 2021

The curious case of Louie Ignacio& rsquo;s & lsquo;Abe-Nida& rsquo;

“A dream is a wish your heart makes,” a line from the iconic animated Cinderella Disney motion picture rings true for multi-awarded TV and film director and renowned contemporary visual artist Louie Ignacio......»»

Category: entertainmentSource:  thestandardRelated NewsMay 3rd, 2021

What you dare…

Back in ’86 when I was living in Westport, Connecticut, my good friend Bianca gifted me with a piece of polished glass with the inscription: “What you dare to dream, dare to do!” I’ve carried the reminder through time and try my best to apply......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsFeb 9th, 2021

Diego Gutierrez debuts as recording artist with & lsquo;On A Dream& rsquo;

Coming from a musical family, it’s no longer a surprise that Diego Gutierrez, one of the latest members of the Gutierrez clan to enter show business, is launching a recording career......»»

Category: entertainmentSource:  thestandardRelated NewsJan 30th, 2021

Top PBA rookie Aaron Black lives up to dad Norman s dream

Living up to Norman Black's aspirations, Aaron showed he too can excel in the PBA like his dad when he claimed Most Outstanding Rookie honors in last month's Philippine Cup held at Angeles University Foundation Sports and Cultural Center in Pampanga......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsJan 18th, 2021

Ma, what’s on my plate?

THE WEEKEND READER: This submitted essay proposes an alternative way of living this new year, with a mind set to be more international and conscious of what we do—beginning with what we eat By Khennan John Suarez The year 2020 has been… unhealthy. But if there’s one thing we were given a chance for, it’s to take a harder look at our lifestyles in retrospect. For some, myself included, this means becoming more conscious of the food that goes into my body. The advancement in nutritionism over the past 20 years has changed the way we look at our plates. Once colorful meals that consisted of “go, grow, and glow” staples are now replaced with single, nutrient-packed breakfast bars coupled with energy drinks endorsed by the influencer-of-the-week. One would think that all these diet bars, and pills, would’ve transformed people healthier, with lifestyle diseases kept at bay. Sadly, this remains a dream today as it was 10 years ago. (Manila Bulletin/Unsplash) Data from WHO, CDC, and UN reveal that some of the top killer diseases in our country are attributed to lifestyle. And while life expectancy has increased over the past decade, so have cases of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and stroke. This fact raises more questions in nutrition. Despite crazy fads that promise longevity, what are we doing wrong? It makes sense to start a closer examination of what goes into our bodies. In An Eater’s Manifesto—highly recommended!—by Sam Pollan, there is a mantra that could be an ultimate guide to eating better. Eat food. And by this, he means eat whole food. For a beat, let’s forget about these canned goods, boxed cereals, processed fruit juices, and everything with ingredients we can’t even pronounce. Let’s forget about the most recent trend in nutrition and trace back to what our bodies (and our ancestors’ bodies) instinctively know as good food—whole grains, fresh fruits, and vegetables, sizeable portions of animal meats, milk, nuts, and all other products that are organic. Food products that are as close to their most natural forms as possible. Let’s assemble our plates in a way that pushes highly processed and artificial products away from it, whenever we can. For as hard as science has been working to understand nutrition better, and until we eventually come up with a “fountain-of-youth” pill, there remain cellular processes that we are yet to discover. For the meantime, it makes more sense to stick with natural basics. (Manila Bulletin/Unsplash) It’s also quite notable to know that while nutritionists still argue about which diet is best for us, they can all agree that plants do not kill us. Becoming more in tune with our nutrition is also an opportunity to start building relations to our farmers, and ask how produce is grown. Is the ground healthy? Are they showered with chemicals? Are the animals that supplied our food well-fed? This even raises ethical questions as to how they were raised and slaughtered. This strengthens the relationships we have with people that grow our food, our connection to our community, and the relationship we have with the earth around us. After all, nutrition is just a portion of more complex symbiotic relationship bigger than all of us. With the dawn of a new year, it pays that we become more intentional and more conscious of what we do. And today, we can start by asking, “Ma, what’s on my plate?” About the author: Khennan John is a 20-something health enthusiast with a knack for writing. The Weekend Reader is a Sunday submission segment of Manila Bulletin Lifestyle Arts + Culture. Those who wish to submit their essays for the Weekend Reader may do so via email: mblifestyleonline@gmail.com. As subject of the email, write WEEKEND READER followed by the title of your essay. The opinions and views expressed in The Weekend Reader are of the respective authors and not of the Manila Bulletin......»»

Category: newsSource:  mb.com.phRelated NewsJan 17th, 2021

Word to the artistic

From national artists to award-winning actors and drag queens, inspirational words of advice from our local creatives Last year brought us to our knees, yet here we are standing tall with courage, facing 2021 with hope and a positive perspective. To give us more inspiration to create and explore new things this year, the Manila Bulletin has compiled some quotes from creative individuals, from national artists to award-winning actress. May their words of wisdom bring out the creative urges in all of us, as we make this world a better, more colorful, more meaningful place to live in. Kidlat Tahimik, national artist for film We are all adjusting to the new normal—new rules and new protocols. I’m sure that most artists are taking this time to take art deeper into their hearts. After all, you have nothing to do but just to be productive. *** Ian Inoy, biromantic pansexual artist Every move I made with my art before had this follow up question in my head, asking if it would look gay or not. Now that I’ve fully accepted myself, nothing like that matters anymore. I no longer have the fear of hearing people perceiving my art as “too gay or girly.” *** Heart Evangelista/Love Marie Ongpauco Escudero, actor, painter Express yourself in art. See how art can move you or distract you from distress or how art can bring the best out of you. I notice that my paintings have been a bit muted these days. I feel it’s a bit because of the drama that’s going on around us. In a weird way, I find beauty in sorrow and the way my colors have been coming out, I like what’s happening. I’ve always been like this anyway. I find something beautiful about my emotions, no matter how dark they are, and I translate all that into art. *** Whatsoever you do, if you do it joyfully, if you do it lovingly, if your act of doing is not purely economic, then it is creative.—Osho, Creativity unleashing the forces within *** Kate Adajar, blogger artist The uncertainty Covid-19 brings has triggered confusion, anxiety, and mixed emotions in me. But the lockdown has also given me time to focus on and practice my art. Being in quarantine has allowed me to look at my craft not only as a creative outlet but also as a form of stress release. It has suddenly become therapeutic and meditative. *** F. Sionil Jose, national artist for literature Photo by Noel Pabalate Artistry is something that is created not just by intellect but by passion. And you stop being a craftsman. That is when you become an artist. You cannot be an artist without being a craftsman first. *** Miz Kiki Krunch, drag queen I am more creative as a gay person. My drag persona brings out the best and most authentic part of me. I can express myself better, I can perform better when I channel my weirdness, my “freak,” my truth. *** Cherie Gil, actor Everything can be learned as long as one sets one’s mind and heart to it. There is also no age limit to learning anything. Acting—what is it really but reliving lives and telling their stories. But this requires a lot of work to excavate the instrument to be able to truthfully do just that. It’s not easy. It takes a lot of balls to share one’s personal inner sanctum. *** Iana Cris Forbes, owner of art shop Quiversmiths Pursue what you want. At first, it was hard for me because I wanted to be a painter, I wanted to be a sculptor, I wanted to be a graphic artist, I wanted to be a wedding colorist, I wanted to stitch, I wanted to make bags and shoes and jewelry. But I haven’t seen a person doing all of those!. Before, I could not see any future in them but here they are now. I’m doing everything all at once and I’m fine. I’m happy living multiple lives. It’s like connecting the dots. My hobbies are now my sources of living and I couldn’t be more thankful. *** BenCab, national artist for visual arts This pandemic gives artists more time for their art. It’s usually better for an artist to be locked-in because you work on your own. *** Natasha Aliño, jewelry artist It’s been said many times and my mother always says this whenever I feel frustrated, which most people would feel when they’re starting something new—“trust the process.” This is more of a reminder when you’re in that headspace. Another thing is when you are learning a certain skill, do it so with purpose and authenticity. Then you can confidently say after some time that you can indeed trust the process. Never stop learning and inspiring others on your journey. Photos from the artists’ respective social media accounts and websites.....»»

Category: newsSource:  mb.com.phRelated NewsJan 17th, 2021

Palawan Queen’s Gambit: Antoinette San Diego making her dad proud

Twenty-one-year old Woman International Master Marie Antoinette San Diego from Dasmariñas, Cavite, who is a member of the Palawan Queen’s Gambit team in the PCAPis living her father, Anton’s dream to be a chess master; albeit wholeheartedly......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsDec 26th, 2020

Belingon, Eustaquio eye pivotal wins in ONE: Inside the Matrix III

Belingon will battle a dangerous knockout artist in John Lineker of Brazil in the main offering while Eustaquio will tackle Song Min Jong of South Korea in a 64-kg catch weight bout, both eyeing nothing less than a win that they hope would push them closer to a title crack......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsNov 12th, 2020

Pagdanganan living a dream, inspiring the youth

Next to working on achieving her goals in golf’s biggest arena, Bianca Pagdanganan is doing all she could to inspire the youth all over the world, especially back home, to take up the sport where she has quite made an impact so early in her rookie season on the LPGA Tour......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsOct 21st, 2020

Lea Salonga supports Manila resto week

Manila’s campaign to revive the food and beverage business in the city received a much-needed boost after world-renowned singer and artist Lea Salonga allowed the use of her latest song, “Dream Again,” for the event. Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso made the announcement during the weekly Capital Report on Friday. “She will help us promote […] The post Lea Salonga supports Manila resto week appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsSep 12th, 2020

VLOG WATCH: Liza Soberano reacts to ‘Ice Cream’ MV by BLACKPINK and Selena Gomez

DREAM COME TRUE para sa Kapamilya sweetheart na si Liza Soberano ang makitang mag-collaborate ang kanyang paboritong K-Pop Girl Group na BLACKPINK sa kanyang isa pang iniidolo na si Selena Gomez. Ang ‘Ice Cream‘ ang pinakabagong kanta ng BLACKPINK na featured guest artist ang international superstar na si Selena Gomez. Bilang ‘Blink’ (fan ng BLACKPINK) […] The post VLOG WATCH: Liza Soberano reacts to ‘Ice Cream’ MV by BLACKPINK and Selena Gomez appeared first on Pinoy Parazzi......»»

Category: newsSource:  pinoyparazziRelated NewsAug 30th, 2020

Mark Magsayo vs. Jose Haro set for September 23rd in Los Angeles

Undefeated Filipino featherweight Mark "Magnifico" Magsayo's return to the ring this year has been confirmed.  The 25-year old will be making his first walk out to the ring as a member of Manny Pacquiao's MP Promotions stable on Wednesday, September 23rd in Los Angeles, California when he faces American Jose "Pepito" Haro in a ten-round contest.  Both MP Promotions and Magsayo himself posted the bout announcement on their respective social media pages.  Magsayo (20-0, 14 KO), one of the country's most promising prospects, will be looking to gain momentum once again after competing just two times in the last two years or so. Formerly an up-and-coming project of the recently-folded ALA Promotions, Magsayo made a name for himself an an exciting knockout artist with world championship potential.  Following a split with ALA Promotions in 2017, Magsayo was inactive for all of 2018, before returning to the ring twice in 2019.  Earlier this year, the Tagbilaran-native announced his signing with MP Promotions. In July, Magsayo flew to the US to begin training camp.  Facing Magsayo is 33-year old Haro, who owns a 15-1-1 pro record with 8 wins via KO. The Washington native is currently riding a seven-fight winning streak. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 20th, 2020

Fil-Am MMA fighter Mark Striegl to kick-off UFC Fight Night card in Las Vegas

Filipino-American mixed martial artist Mark "Mugen" Striegl will be kicking off the upcoming UFC Fight Night: Munhoz vs. Edgar fight card in the UFC Apex in Las Vegas this coming Saturday, August 22nd (August 23rd, Manila time).  The UFC posted the event's full fight card on their official website, and it shows Striegl in the opening fight of the preliminary card against fellow newcomer Timur Valiev of Russia, confirming earlier reports.  Valiev owns a 16-2 professional record with previous stints in the World Series of Fighting and the Professional Fighters League.  The 32-year old Striegl officially signed his UFC contract last week, calling the jump to the world's biggest MMA organization "a dream come true."  The Baguio-based Striegl owns an 18-2-0, 1 No Contest professional record with stints in the PXC, ONE Championship and the URCC, where he was most recently the promotion's featherweight titleholder.  Striegl owns a submission victory over #7-ranked UFC flyweight contender Kai Kara-France. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 17th, 2020

FIBA: Mighty Jimmy and the shot that introduced Gilas to the World

This story was originally published on Feb. 24, 2019 It’s Saturday night at Mall of Asia and the arena is absolutely rocking. Eternal basketball rivals in the Philippines and South Korea are delivering another classic. Gilas Pilipinas is down to the final minute of regulation against its longtime tormentor in the second of two semifinal games. The national team is up by two, 81-79. The Philippines is hosting the 2013 FIBA-Asia Championships where three tickets to the 2014 World Cup are at stake and the winner of this particular game gets one of those tickets. Given the rich history of both teams and what it would mean to the winner, this pivotal game has gone down the wire as everyone pretty much expected. Also knowing the history of both teams in international play, Gilas’ precarious two-point lead was not safe at all. A ghost was lurking in the background and a dreaded curse felt almost inevitable. Down to the final minute of the crucial grudge match between the Philippines and South Korea, guard Jimmy Alapag has the ball and a two-point lead. What he will do will help define not only his career but the legacy of the Gilas name as a national team.   WAKE-UP CALL Even before the Philippines-Korea game, Gilas Pilipinas already had to go through one emotional game early in its homestand for the Asian Championships. In a preliminary round showdown against Chinese Taipei, the Filipinos collapsed in the fourth quarter, allowing the Taiwanese to steal a morale-boosting 84-79 win. In 2013, the relationship between the two countries hit a rough patch over the death of one Taiwanese fisherman. In an updated May 17 report by CNN’s Jethro Mullen, “Taiwan has reacted angrily after one of its fishermen was killed by a Philippine coast guard vessel.” Taiwan had frozen applications from OFWs seeking jobs in its territory and the government of then President Ma Ying-jeou demanded an apology, among other things, from the Philippines. While the national basketball teams of both countries never really had any prior animosity with each other, tension was naturally present as both teams squared off in Group A action. Gilas Pilipinas and Chinese-Taipei both entered the showdown with identical 2-0 records and the winner would take control of solo Group A lead heading into round 2. Taking a good lead into the fourth quarter, the Philippines was outscored by 18 in the last 10 minutes and the national team took its worst home loss in quite some time. “At the time, it was a huge game for us. We understood what was happening in Taipei during that particular time. We really wanted to win for what our kababayans were going through at that time,” guard Jimmy Alapag said on that first home loss in the 2013 Asian Championships. “We didn’t get the job done, and it was tough especially to lose a game like that, it was a very emotional and it was a game that we knew we needed,” he added. The crushing loss meant that the Philippines had little room for error in round 2. While Gilas didn’t have any world beaters lined up in the second round, anything less than a perfect run would have meant an early clash with Asia’s established powerhouse teams in the knockout stages. On the other side of the bracket, defending champion China, Iran, and South Korea were battling for position and were expected to finish in the top-3. That means if Gilas Pilipinas failed to finish no. 1 in its group, the national team would have faced one of those teams in the quarterfinals. Gilas picked up a crucial win over Qatar in the 6th of August and the day after, the Philippines got some help from those same Qataris as they beat Taipei in a close decision. At the end of round 2, all teams finished with identical win-loss records but Gilas Pilipinas would take over first place after all tiebreaks were considered, barely edging out Taipei. The Philippines ended up avoiding defending champion China, Iran, and South Korea and instead got Kazakhstan in the quarterfinals. No. 2 Taipei drew China and the third-running Qataris were matched up with the South Koreans. “I think that was the moment we grew up and grew closer. I think that was the lowest of the lows, just because of the atmosphere and what was going on between both countries. It kind of felt that we let our end of the bargain down, you know what I mean? We’re on our home soil and we didn’t take care of business. I think that was one of those moments where we had to really check ourselves and find a way to make it right,” forward Gabe Norwood said of the Taipei loss. “But it turned out to be a blessing in disguise. In tournaments like FIBA-Asia it’s important that you have short-term memory whether it was a win or a loss. We needed to let go of that game and continue to stay the course, keep our focus in the tournament,” Alapag added. On August 7, four days after Gilas lost to Taipei, the rift between the Philippines and Taiwan would reach a resolution and the latter country lifted its freeze hiring and other sanctions on the former. The Philippines also did issue on official apology over the death of the Taiwanese fisherman a couple of months prior and the National Bureau of Investigation in Manila recommended the pressing of homicide charges to erring members of the Philippine Coast Guard.   DARK HISTORY If the word “rival” is to be defined as a, “person or group that tries to defeat or be more successful than another person or group” then sure, the Philippines and South Korea are rivals. Both countries are rivals in the Asian basketball scene and they have been going at it for a very long time. But if the word rival can also mean “equal” or “peer,” is the Philippines really a worthy basketball rival to South Korea? The Philippines’ history with South Korea in terms of basketball is dark. Very dark. Consider the most high-profile matches between the two countries and you’ll see that the Philippine national team is just not at the level of South Korea. Or at the very least, Koreans always seem to reach 120 percent of their potential when they play Filipinos and we barely bring out 80 percent of our abilities when matched up against our East Asian neighbors. The 1998 PBA Centennial team, arguably the greatest Philippine team ever assembled, was demolished by South Korea in the Asian Games. A national team set up for gold only settled for bronze. Speaking of a bronze medal game, the original Gilas Pilipinas team lost a podium finish to South Korea in the 2011 FIBA-Asia Championships. That team squandered a double-digit lead and collapsed late. Of course, who can forget the semifinals of the 2002 Asian Games in Busan when Olsen Racela had the chance to put the Philippines up four but missed two free throws. South Korea would win with a booming triple at the buzzer off a broken play and would later take down China to capture the gold medal. South Korea is the Philippines’ basketball nemesis for all intents and purposes. A worthy adversary that always seem to emerge victorious at our expense. Still, all that previous disappointment didn’t seem to bother Gilas Pilipinas six years ago. The team was not scared and instead, they were excited even. One factor to greatly consider was that fact that the game was in Manila. It makes all the difference to play at home. “We understood the bad history that we had with Korea. We haven’t been very successful with them in quite some time but we knew from Day 1 that if ever we got an opportunity to play them at home, then we have a great chance,” Alapag said. “Man, pre-game, it was just the focus. Everybody was up for the challenge, I don’t think anybody was really nervous, I think it was just the anxiety... we wanted to get out there and do it already,” Norwood added. Playing at home had its perks for sure, but it also had its drawbacks. For all the painful losses the Philippines suffered at the hands of South Korea, it would have been devastating if Gilas actually took a beating in Manila. Stakes were extra high in this particular chapter of this long, ongoing saga. “There was always pressure, it was something that we acknowledged early. Playing at home, it’s great having that support but at the same time, there is some added pressure because you wanna make sure that you make our home crowd proud of the team that they watch and ultimately, win games,” Alapag said, making sure to note that the national team knew of the disadvantages of playing at home even before the Korea game. “It was there but it was something that we acknowledged and we wanted to make sure that we took advantage of the opportunity playing at home,” he added.   ALL FILIPINO, ALL HEART Once it was go time, the Philippines-South Korea game went about pretty normal, as you would expect any game from these two national teams. But even before halftime, an injury to Gilas center Marcus Douthit changed the complexion of the semifinals showdown. All of a sudden, the Philippines was without its anchor, without its best player. Sure, there were players on the Gilas bench that can come in and replace Douthit’s size but there was simply no one on the Gilas bench that can come in and replace his talent, production, and just overall presence. June Mar Fajardo was in that Gilas bench but it 2013, the would-be five-time PBA Most Valuable Player was just not at that level yet. It would have been easy for Gilas Pilipinas to fold like cheap furniture and succumb to the overwhelming pressure of trying to overcome South Korea to reach a stage very few Filipinos have reached before. Gilas didn’t fold and instead, the Douthit injury rallied the team even further. “Alam mo sa totoo lang, puso na lang yun eh. Nung nawala si Marcus talaga, sabi ni coach kailangan doble kayod tayo. Dahil sobrang dehado tayo kumbaga, wala na tayong import, wala tayong malaki,” forward Marc Pingris said. With Douthit gone, Ping ate up all of his minutes and worked by committee with guys like Ranidel De Ocampo and Japeth Aguilar to fill in the gaps. “As a player naman, kami nagusap-usap kami na kahit anong mangyari, lalaban kami. Yung time na yun, talagang patay kung patay,” Ping added. Despite losing its best player to an untimely injury, Gilas Pilipinas’ confidence in winning never wavered. With their collective backs against the wall, the Philippine national team played even better. Unlike the later iterations of Gilas Pilipinas, the 2013 team, aptly called Gilas 2.0, had the luxury of having actual preparation before the FIBA-Asia Championships. The amount of work that came before the tournament and the Korea game, the bond built over countless hours of training, all of that helped the national team avoid a monumental meltdown in front of a rabid Manila crowd. “We were such a close-knit team in terms of our chemistry, in terms of the talent that we had, so we felt confident even when Marcus went down early in the game. If you looked at our huddle, you had 11 more very confident guys, not just in themselves but more importantly, in each other,” Alapag said. “That just boiled down to the chemistry that we had. I don’t think any of us panicked, we were all confident in each other. We’ve all been into that situation with our PBA teams, having the ball in our hands and making a play. Knowing that we had five weapons on the floor that could make the winning play, I think it made us very confident and we were able to sustain our composure,” the former Gilas captain added.   THE GHOST AND ITS CURSE Shin Dong Pa, Hur Jae, Lee Sang-min, Oh Se-Keun, TJ Moon, and Cho Sung-min are just some players from the South Korean national team that inflicted incredible damage to the Philippines over the course of decades. The dreaded Ghost of South Korea takes form in these players and its curse is to give Filipinos the most heart-crushing loss possible. In 2013, the Ghost was Kim Min-goo and his curse was to beat Gilas Pilipinas in Manila. Despite losing Marcus Douthit and trailing by three points at the break, the Philippines started to turn the tables in the second half. Gilas Pilipinas unleashed Jayson Castro and the Blur led a blazing offense in the third quarter, finding a way to take a 10-point lead over South Korea, the Philippines’ largest of the night. But as the dust settled and Gilas holding a 65-56 lead entering the final period, an ominous figure would make his presence felt. The Korean Ghost has arrived and his name was Kim Min-goo. His curse? Beat Gilas Pilipinas in Manila. Kim was 22 and a senior in college when he made the South Korean national basketball team as a backup shooter in 2013. In nine games in Manila, Kim would play well enough to make the tournament’s All-Star team, averaging 12.7 points, 4.1 rebounds, and 2.7 assists. He led Asian Championships with 25 three-point field goals, 10 came in the last two games and five came against Gilas Pilipinas. Kim drilled back-to-back triples to open the fourth quarter against the Philippines. Later, his fifth triple — a four-point play at that — pushed the Koreans to within a point, 72-73. South Korea would take over soon after as Lee Seung-jun dunked the basketball on a fastbreak. The Ghost has arrived and his curse is in effect. “Ako pumasok sa isip ko yun nung lumamang Korea, na putek ito na naman,” Pingris said. “Pero ang sabi ko, sayang yung opportunity, kaya naman eh. So sabi ni Jimmy samin, no matter what happens wag kami gi-give up. Pinaghirapan natin to at may goal tayo, this year aalis tayo,” he added, noting the team’s goal to get into Spain and compete with the world’s best national teams. Faced with the possibility of dealing with a devastating defeat, Gilas had enough mental fortitude to keep things going. Trust your system, trust your preparation, trust your crowd, trust your teammates, and more importantly, trust yourselves. “You’re never out of the game if you’re playing at home,” Norwood said as they stared a deficit late against their destined rivals. “I think that was our mindset, keep it close and just find a way,” he added. Jimmy Alapag found a way.   BORN READY Down 73-75, Jimmy Alapag was under heavy duress when he let go of a three-pointer from the left wing just in front of his bench. It was good to go. The Philippines was back on top by one as Alapag somehow managed to get his team to snap out of an initial shock following Korea’s strong fourth-quarter rally. The stage is now set for a wild finish and Jimmy will star in the final act of what has been an incredible show by Gilas and South Korea. “In situations like that, as an athlete and as a pro, that’s the situations that you dream about,” Alapag said.  “Those are shots that you practice when you were a kid. When the shot clock is winding down, to have an opportunity to knock down a shot. It’s a shot that I practiced thousands of times,” he added. After the Philippines and South Korea traded baskets for the lead, Alapag made perhaps the most underrated play in this crazy and emotional encounter between two basketball rivals. Tasked with inbounding the ball just near underneath his own basket, Alapag found his Talk ‘N Text teammate Ranidel De Ocampo for an open look at three. Swish. Gilas leads, 81-77, with 91 seconds to go. “Ranidel was my favorite target for a very, very long time in my career,” Alapag said on the play that most people probably don’t even remember. “Once I saw that he got open, I wanted to make sure that I gave him as great a pass as possible and Ranidel has been known for a long time to take care of the rest,” he added.   THE EXORCIST “Yeah, I was right under the basket,” Gabe Norwood says with a laugh when asked if he remembers the shot that changed the course of Gilas Pilipinas as a national team. Late in the fourth quarter of what was essentially a heavyweight bout, the Philippines just landed two strong haymakers but South Korea would refuse to go down without a fight, beating the count of 10 each time. Down to the final minute of a crucial grudge match with a World Cup berth on the line, Jimmy Alapag had his hands on the basketball as Gilas would go to its halfcourt set. Jimmy will never let go of said basketball. Up two, Jimmy did what Olsen wished he could 11 years prior. Up two against South Korea in a pivotal semifinal game, Alapag received a screen from Marc Pingris, which was enough to momentarily shake off Kim Tae-sul. With some room, Alapag drifted to his left and let a three-point shot fly. Boom. Gilas leads, 84-79, with 54 seconds to go. The shot would later be remembered as the one that ended the Korean Curse, the one that finally exorcised the Ghost. “The first thought that came to my mind was don’t miss,” Jimmy said of the clutch jumper. “That last one, Ping sets a good screen and I got a clean look. It’s a shot that myself, and Jayson [Castro], and Larry [Fonacier], and Gary [David], and Jeff [Chan], all of us, we practice that shot time and time again after practice. So you know, it was a shot that I was confident in but in that moment, all you’re thinking about was don’t miss,” he added. It’s one thing to be confident in yourself and to be confidednt in your preparation. It’s a different thing to actually perform under such pressure. As soon as Alapag managed to shoot his shot, Gabe Norwood did what any other good teammate would do and got in position to get the offensive rebound. You know, just in case. Gabe got the ball alright, but he got it after it swished through the rim. “When he put the shot up, I tried to crash for the rebound but I basically knew that it was going in,” he said. “I had probably the best view, I was right under the basket. I think caught it after it went through too,” Norwood added. Alapag checked out moments later as the Philippines went to its defensive lineup in order to stop another Korean comeback. South Korea turned to its most effective shooter in Kim and as he rose up to try and answer Alapag’s triple, Norwood met him at the apex for the game’s most dramatic stop. Gabe blocked Kim and Gilas would finish things off with a final Marc Pingris basket on the other end. A historic 86-79 win was complete. “I still get chills thinking about it, to look up and see grown men just breaking down. My wife was trying to hold my kids and she was holding back tears. It was just an awesome moment, the bond that we had on that team, the stuff that we did to get prepare, I think we poured it all out in that game,” Norwood said on the monumental victory. “I think it probably didn’t hit me until the final buzzer sounded. Not just for me but for the entire team, when that final buzzer sounded, it was such a special group of guys and the fact that we could share that moment with not just with each other but the entire country, it’s something I’ll remember for the rest of my life,” Alapag added, savoring the moment of a Philippine win over Korea 28 years in the making.   THE INTRODUCTION Gilas Pilipinas would lose to Iran the next day in the Finals of the 2013 FIBA-Asia Championships. The Philippines put up a fight but Hamed Haddadi would prove to be too powerful to stop. It would take another two years for Gilas to beat Iran but that didn’t really matter in the moment. The Philippines is headed to the World Championships for the first time in three decades. The Philippines has beaten South Korea and one singular shot has allowed the Gilas name to be known around the world. Jimmy wouldn’t say that though. At least not directly in that way. “For me, that shot was the biggest for my career. But really, it was our entire team. We’ve gone through so much and that was just one particular play that really culminated the entire game and all the contributions from other guys from Gabe’s defense, to Ping’s rebounding, to Japeth’s rim protecting, to Jayson and LA doing a lot of the legwork,” Alapag said. “Everybody had their part in contribution to the game. After the shot, after the buzzer sounded, it was just a very special moment for us as a team and for Philippine basketball to show that all of the sacrifices, all of the hard work, now it’s given an opportunity to re-introduce ourselves to the world,” he added. Jimmy wouldn’t say it, but his teammates would. That shot of his that beat South Korea in the 2013 FIBA-Asia Championships introduced the Gilas name to the world. It announced that the Philippines has finally arrived. Gilas’ breakthrough overtime win a year later in Spain against Senegal — a game Jimmy pretty much decided late as well — made it known that Filipinos are here to stay on the World stage. “I would say so, it got us to where we wanted to be in the World Cup. I think we shocked some people there as well. But just the work that went in, I think it showed the country that we can get back to where we want to be as long as you work together,” Norwood said. “Yung puso ni Jimmy, grabe naman. Makikita mo maliit pero gusto lang niya talaga manalo. Ang liit pero parang lion pag nagalit eh, nandoon yung tiwala namin sa kanya. Ano pa ba masasabi mo, Jimmy is Jimmy Alapag,” Pingris would add.   [NOTES: At the time of original publishing, Gilas Pilipinas was fighting to make a return trip to the FIBA World Cup, this time in China in 2019. To secure its slot, the the Philippine national team needed to beat Kazakhstan in Astana plus a loss from Japan, Jordan, and/or Lebanon. One of the teams that can help Gilas is South Korea... ironically. Jimmy Alapag retired from national team play in 2014 and retired playing for good in 2016. He has since made himself a champion basketball coach in the ABL. Marc Pingris suffered an ACL injury in 2018 and is in the process of returning for his PBA team in the current 2019 season. Gabe Norwood is still in Gilas. He’s still an effective two-way weapon. He can still dunk and will stop your best player too.]   [Updated Notes: The Philippines beat Kazakhstan to make the 2019 FIBA World Cup in China. Gilas got help from... South Korea. The Koreans beat Lebanon on the road, allowing Gilas to advance to the World Championships outright with a victory over Kazakhstan.]   — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 10th, 2020

After 30 years, a farmer now owns three gardens and provides jobs amid crisis, part 2

In part 1, Mary Ann Cogollo, a farmer from Iloilo, shares about how her 30-year gardening story began and evolved. Here, she talks about the hurdles she had to face that molded her for who she is today.   Trials behind the triumphs At the back of her success is an unsteady, challenging voyage that she had to endure. “It’s 30 years in the making and looking back to what I’ve been through and endured, my heart is full,” said Cogollo. Growing up, Camille, her eldest daughter, saw how she fell and risen many times, she says, “I witnessed how she carried the pails from our wells to water her plants, pull the weeds every day, carried potted plants to hide them because of the heavy storms, how she failed and endured everything, how she learned from her experiences, and how she managed to be a farmer, a gardener, and a mother to us.” A throwback photo of Cogollo taken in 1994 with her 5-year old daughter. Before the birth of the gardens, Cogollo had been gardening alone for 10 years. She did the propagation, watering, and application of fertilizers. It was a challenge for this gardener to find suppliers and to travel the plants from the city to their place, but the hardest to deal with is the weather. “Typhoons and extreme summer are two of the most difficult situations to handle as well as dealing with plant diseases and pests. I failed a lot, some of my plants weren’t a success, but I learned from them,” Cogollo added. Blooming profits The price for the plants in the flower farm ranges from P25 to P10,000 and up. On normal days, they get to sell hundreds of plants every month that differ based on the demand. Most of it is purchased by co-gardeners too. Cogollo said that this season has the highest sales so far to the point that they travel some plants to the other garden to fill the demand. When they opened last month, they were able to dispose of 3000 to 5000 pots, which allowed them to generate a minimum of 50k per day from all the gardens. A mother, farmer, and businesswoman As a mother of two, she lets her children participate in farmwork and immerse themselves in nature at a young age. As per Camille, Cogollo taught her how to plant when she was four and let her have her mini garden at home. Their youngest also helps in raising livestock since he was in grade six. “They let us oversee the farm the same way that my lolo did before. She’s taught me how to plant and to marcot, how to fertilize and water correctly, and educated me what plants can grow from cuttings and what plants need to be in full sun or in shade,” Camille added. Despite the crisis, Cogollo added that God still made a way to provide for her family and their farm workers. She finds herself staring at the sky and thanking God for not leaving her family and the families working for them after two months of farm closure. When many people began growing plants to improve lifestyle amid the crisis, her children told her, “Nay your dream is coming true, farming and gardening are taking its shape, gakatabo na nay (it’s finally happening).” Cogollo only hopes for the public to continue appreciating nature and to start growing plants.   Farming has been her life ever since. The life she chose is the same life lived by her parents and grandparents and according to her, to be able to help others while pursuing your passion is a blessing.  Current situation As the government implemented enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) to halt the spread of COVID-19, they had to close their gardens for two months. Since they only allow walk-ins and do not offer delivery services, they had no income from the garden. For Cogollo, those two months were the hardest; there were no landscaping projects but they had to give salaries to the employees every weekend. They thought of stopping their daily farm operations, but their musings brought them back to their primary goal, which is to provide the workers’ livelihood. They hired five more people who lost their jobs during those two months and didn’t stop propagating and maintaining the gardens. All smiles on her farm – As per Cogollo, the crisis allowed them to pause and see what they can do better. Living on a farm is an advantage because it’s COVID-free and their staff live nearby so they carry on with their daily work in the gardens and farm. Fortunately, after two months, a sudden increase in demand for plants began. The crisis has become as she calls it, “a ‘plantdemic’ for Ilonggos.” Their gardens re-opened for visitors when Iloilo was placed under GCQ (general community quarantine). From then on, the farm was amplified by different networks through social media and word of mouth. Despite their location, they were shocked that people kept visiting or asking about their gardens’ location. At some point, they were afraid due to the increasing numbers of visitors and of the risks it can entail that might harm their whole community. However, it was all worth it because according to Cogollo, “We know our dream is coming true. Farming/Gardening is taking shape.” They were also supposed to put up a garden café and park last May but due to these circumstances, things didn’t go as planned. In the future, they see the garden as a haven where people can stroll and appreciate and realize the beauty of nature. Photos from Dafalongs Flower Farm. For more information, visit the Dafalongs Flower Farms......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 30th, 2020

ONE Champ Christian Lee open to fight with former titleholder Eduard Folayang

Reigning ONE Lightweight World Champion Christian “The Warrior” Lee may be young, but he’s proven throughout his career that he won’t back down from a challenge.  In early 2019, the 22-year old jumped up to the lightweight division and survived an early onslaught from grappling ace and former two-time world champion Shinya Aoki to dethrone the Japanese legend and become the new lightweight king.  Later that year, Lee stepped up on short notice to take on surging knockout artist Saygid Guseyn “Dagi” Arslanaliev in the finals of the ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix. Lee would stifle Dagi and end up winning the tournament.  Now, Lee gets ready to take on all comers as the top dog in one of ONE Championship’s most stacked divisions.  Up next for the Singaporean star is expected to be undefeated Moldovian challenger Iuri Lapicus, who took out Thai veteran Shannon Wiratchai and former featherweight world champion Marat Gafurov to earn a shot at ONE gold.  For Lee however, he’s ready for anyone that steps up to him.  “I will defend my belt against anyone, anytime. The lightweight division is the most stacked division in ONE Championship, so I feel like it will only be right to start with the number one contender and work my way down until my division is cleared out,” Lee told ONE Championship.  While not currently in the top-5 of the lightweight division, former two-time ONE Lightweight World Champion and Filipino MMA icon Eduard “Landslide” Folayang appears to be on the radar of the champion as well.  “I would love to share the ONE Circle with Eduard Folayang,” Lee shared. “I have a lot of respect for all that he’s accomplished in his career, and I think that we could put on a great show for the fans.” Folayang first captured the ONE Lightweight World Championship back in 2016, stunning the world with an upset win over Aoki, becoming the first man to dethrone the Japanese star. In late-2018, Folayang bested top lightweight contender Amir Khan for the vacant world championship.  “Eduard is a very good striker, and is now rounding out his wrestling and Jiu-Jitsu,” Lee added. “However, I feel that his main strengths are his heart and his killer instinct. He’s the two-time former ONE Lightweight World Champion, so he doesn’t have many weaknesses. I think he’s a great fighter.” Another name that Lee mentioned is former UFC Lightweight World Champion Eddie Alvarez, who’s one of the biggest names on ONE’s lightweight roster.  “Eddie [Alvarez] has done enough in his career to make him a legend of this sport, so I would love to share the ONE Circle with him when the time comes. I think that our styles would make for an exciting fight for the fans,” said Lee. Alvarez has split his first two outings under the ONE banner, losing to Russian star Timofey Nastyukhin in his debut before bouncing back and submitting Folayang.  (READ ALSO: WHAT IF: Eduard Folayang had stopped Eddie Alvarez back in 2019?) “I think that Eddie is a very well-rounded mixed martial artist. He has great striking, wrestling, and just recently displayed great Jiu-Jitsu in his last outing against Eduard Folayang. He’s a very complete fighter who does not have too many weaknesses. It would be a big mistake to underestimate his skill set,” Lee continued.  Ultimately, Lee’s plan is to clear out the lightweight division before going back down to featherweight and rekindle an old rivalry against reigning ONE Featherweight World Champion Martin “The Situ-Asian” Nguyen.  Lee and Nguyen have crossed paths twice before, with Nguyen coming out on top both times.  “After I successfully defend my belt, I plan on going back down to featherweight to challenge Martin Nguyen for his title,” said Lee. “I am the reigning and undisputed ONE Lightweight World Champion, and also the number one contender in the featherweight division. The only reason I go back down to featherweight will be to fight for the title.”.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 28th, 2020

Jose Sarasola to showcase culinary skills on TV as he joins GMA Artist Center family

It has been a dream for Fil-Spanish chef and actor Jose Sarasola to show off his culinary skills on television. And now that he is part of GMA Artist Center (GMAAC), he believes that he will realize this dream very soon......»»

Category: entertainmentSource:  thestandardRelated NewsJun 17th, 2020