Time for broader view of PH sports | Inquirer Sports
One Game At A Time

Time for broader view of PH sports

/ 12:02 AM June 22, 2015

UNDERSTANDABLY, two sports that stirred interest in the recent 28th Southeast Asian Games were women’s volleyball and men’s basketball.

The country’s participation in the volleyball competition after a decade’s absence was so intensely anticipated due largely to our renewed interest in the game. The fervor was so strong that even if the women expected an uphill struggle against Indonesia, fans searched everywhere to catch a glimpse of the game.


Some scheduling problems prevented the local television broadcaster from airing the game from Singapore and that did not sit well with volleyball loyalists.

There’s nothing wrong with the passion and support, but the country has come to terms with the truth that, in spite of the individual skills of our players, there’s still a need for chemistry and coordination on the floor.


Time was the main opponent of Roger Gorayeb’s gallant crew. There were too many squabbles in the volleyball federation and the final composition of the team could not be made to prepare it over a longer period.

Consider that most of our neighbors have been playing with a core of players who have been together for some time. Gone are the days when we could simply assemble our best players, give them a few months’ time together and hope that their skills would roll over opponents. Our neighbors have invested in coaching and overseas competitions that are so vital in toughening up a team’s skills and character.

Volleyball official now have a clearer view of what really lies out there. The recent Asian Under-23 tournament held here revealed that other countries are starting the players young. The SEA Games confirmed that the once-dominant Filipinos will have to do so much more to start winning podium finishes again.

In men’s basketball, the gold medal was won as expected. The talented Gilas Cadet crew of college stars got the job done and on that count alone, this country should be grateful.

What’s hard to understand is that there are some who believe that the country is losing its grip on regional supremacy because PBA players are not included in the rosters.

Thailand and Indonesia gave us a scare and it won’t be long before the rest of the region will learn how to really play hoops.

There’s also that feeling that if we don’t roll over opponents by 20 points or more, we haven’t asserted our supremacy.


It’s more of being scared of finally losing the gold medal in the SEA Games. It happened once in Malaysia and it could happen again. There’s also this misplaced sentiment that if the basketball gold is not won in the Games, then there’s nothing to cover up for the shortcomings of the entire campaign.

Basketball is still the Filipinos’ game and it will take a little more time before the rest of the region asserts itself over our teams.

Young Filipino players should still be given a chance to represent the country in the SEA Games as part of their formation. The PBA is not being selfish or unnationalistic if it doesn’t share its players for the Games.

It’s time for broader and macro views of sports in this country, not only for volleyball and basketball but also for all disciplines.  Another sixth-place finish in the medal count behind countries we used to dominate is getting to be too much of a trend.

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TAGS: 28th Southeast Asian Games, Basketball
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