AND while we’re still thinking about it, here are the things we’d like to see in sports in 2019:
Filipino athletes competing in the coming 30th Southeast Asian Games in Manila on Nov. 30-Dec. 11 -- More cheers, less jeers.
World boxing champion Manny Pacquiao -- A decisive knockout victory over Adrien Bronner in Las Vegas on Jan. 17 that will set him up for a much-awaited blockbuster rematch against American hero Floyd Mayweather, Jr.
GM Wesley So --Successful campaign this year that will put him back in the world Top 10 list and invitation to more top-level tournaments.
Two-time Asian track and field queen Lydia de Vega -- A well-deserved Lifetime Award from the Philippine Sportswriters Association (PSA), the country’s oldest media organization, to go along with her Hall of Fame award from the Philippine Sports Commission ( PSC) given last year.
PBA superstar June Mar Fajardo -- A fifth straight PBA MVP award for the “Kraken” with San Miguel Beer..
Asian Games skateboard gold medalist Margielyn Didal -- A respectable showing in the Street League Skateboarding PRO Championships in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, the first Olympic ranking competition for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Marathon queen Mary Joy Tabal -- Another chance to prove her worth in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Asian Games golf double gold medalist Yuka Saso -- More opportunities to improve her skills and bring more honors to the country.
2018 Buenos Aires Youth Olympic Games kiteboarding silver medalist Christian Tio -- Another triumph in the fast-rising sport of kiteboarding.
Basketball idol Kiefer Ravena -- A successful comeback with NLEX in the PBA after the 18-month suspension slapped on him by the FIBA.
WGM Janelle Mae Frayna -- More international training and exposure abroad to achieve her l ifelong dreams of becoming one of Asia’s top female players.
Swimming superstars Micaela Jasmine Mojdeh and Marc Bryan Dula -- Win more medals and accolades in various international swimming competitions despite the many problems now hounding local swimming.
Chess champion Antonella Berthe Racasa -- Fulfill her lifetime dream of winning more chess titles at age 12.
Volleyball superstar Jaja Santiago -- a well-deserved Ms. Volleyball Award from the PSA and the scribes covering her exploits in voleyball.
Motocross idol Kenneth San Andres -- Maintain his supremacy not only in local but international motocross scene under the guidance of his father-manager Junjun.
Motocross star Jaja Jao -- Win a major motocross title that will surely make her father Jolet and mother Tess proud.
Philippine Sports Commisison (PSC), led by Chairman William “Butch” Ramirez --A successful hosting of the 30th SEA Games in Manila.
Philippine Olympic Committee (POC), headed by Chairman Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino and president Ricky Vargas-- A successful hosting of the 30th SEA Games in Manila.
Federation of School Sports Association of the Philippines (FESSAP), headed by David Ong and Baldomero Estenzo -- Another memorable campaign in the 30th Summer Universiade organized by FISU in Napoli, Italy in July.
Games and Amusement Board (GAB) Chairman Abraham “Baham” Mitra -- Another successful year as head of the government supervisory and regulatory body in professional sports and another recognition as “Commission of the Year” given by the World Boxing Council (WBC) in 2017.
PBA Commissioner Willie Marcial -- More blockbuster, more action-packed games that will bring the fans back to the Big Dome, Mall of Asia Arena and even Cuneta Astrodome in Pasay this year.
National Golf Association of the Philippines (NGAP) -- A well-deserved recognition for its role in producing and developing young and talented players who can represent the country in international stage.
Philippine Canoe Kayak and Dragonboat Federation (PCKDF), headed by Jonne Go and coach Len Escollante -- A successful sequel to its world-class perfromance in the 2018 International Canoe Federation (ICF) World Dragon Boat Championships in Gainesville, Georgia last September.
National Chess Federation of the Philippines (NCFP) and president/chairman Prospero “Butch” Pichay -- Find the next Wesley So in Philippine chess.
San Miguel Beer and coach Leo Austria -- Another PBA All-Filipino title.
Barangay Ginebra and coach Tim Cone -- Another PBA Commissioner’s Cup title.
Magnolia and coach Chito Victolero -- Another PBA Governors’ Cup title.
NorthPort Batang Pier and coach Pido Jarencio and manager Bonnie Tan -- A long-overdue PBA semifinal appearance with the Batang Pier.
Phoenix Petroleum and coach Louie Alas -- A PBA playoff appearance.
Columbian Autocar -- A breakthrough season in the PBA under player-turned-coach Johnedel Cardel.
NAASCU champion St. Clare College -- A fourth straight title for Dr. Ernesto Jay Adalem and coach Jino Manansala is another good idea.
Motocross legend Butch Chase -- A reunion race/get-together with fellow motocross stars.
Basketball Association of the Philippines (BAP) secretary-general Graham Lim -- a one-way ticket back home in Manila that will also finally put an end to years of persecution and harassment that kept him away from his loved ones.
Tabloid Organization in Philippine Sports (TOPS) -- Find more feel-good stories to write, especially about the success of the Filipino athletes on and off the playing field.
NOTES -- The Andaya Family of Cainta, Rizal, thru Hermana Mayor Sarah Andaya, is inviting every body to attend a Holy Mass/Procession in honor of Santo Nino on Jan. 20 at the Catalino Cruz /A. Mabini St. in Cainta, Rizal . The Mass will start at 8 a.m., followed by the procession and the blessing of religious articles at Barangay Sto. Nino.
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