ALEJANDRO Baldo Jr, former Philippine Azkals U-22 team member, Chris Tiu, former team Captain of the Gilas Pilipinas national team and Anton Cayanan, member of the Philippine Badminton Team urge the public to unite and support “Team Philippines.”
They shared the “common problems” that they experienced in the past international sports events they joined in their respective social media accounts.
The national athletes narrated their own experiences pertaining to some inconveniences they felt when they represented the country abroad but noted that they were not distracted by these “natural and inevitable” glitches in sports events.
Mr. Baldo, former Philippine Azkals player, called on the public to pour their energies to support the Filipino athletes rather than find faults on others.
The former midfielder for the Philippine Azkals U-22 team, shared a video in social media of their past experience where they had to push their double-decker bus in the middle of the road while they were being transported back to their hotel in Bangkok.
“Dahil wais tayong mga Pinoy imbis na magalit at magreklamo ginawa na lang natin ‘to sa pinakamasayang experience,” Mr. Baldo said.
Mr. Baldo pointed out that national athletes experience several issues related to transportation, food when they join international sports events and stressed that games are more important than these problems.
“Problema sa pagkain kasi paulit-ulit, problema sa transpo at kung ano-ano pa. Lahat po ‘yan ay napagdaanan ng mga atletang Pinoy ‘pag tayo po ang dumadayo sa ibang bansa,” the former Azkals player recalled.
He shared his past experience during their tune-up game in Thailand in 2012 when they competed in the AFC U-22 Championship qualifiers to show that they were not bothered by these problems back then.
Badminton national player Cayanan, for his part, shared his own experience in the 2017 SEA games in Malaysia where their service transportation was delayed and their team was brought in a wrong hotel. He recalled that they had “inadequate food supply” in their hotels but eventually the service improved.
“For sure ‘di lang kami ang sports na nakaranas ng mga pagkukulang noong 2017 SEAG,” Mr. Cayanan narrated in his social media post.
Mr. Tiu, former Philippine Basketball Association cager, also cited the inevitable hitches and inconveniences he personally experienced as a sports delegate before.
As national athletes who were committed to make their country proud, they did not allow these problems affect their game performance. Instead, they remained focus on their games and kept a positive outlook all throughout their participation in the international sports event.
They all hope that Filipinos can express more support to the national athletes to boost their morale and confidence so they perform better.
“Sports is certainly a great platform to inspire the youth, promote good values and unite a nation. Let us not use it to divide us,” Mr. Tiu wrote in his Instagram post.
The Philippine hosting of this year’s SEA games is an opportunity for the country to showcase the world class talents and skills of the Filipino athletes.
Many athletes lament that instead of cheering and supporting the athletes a few days before the official start of the SEA games, the social media is flooded with negativities and criticisms.