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Gilas Pilipinas at ang Pinoy sa Japan

posted Aug 26, 2013, 11:58 PM by Daloy Kayumanggi   [ updated Aug 27, 2013, 12:03 AM ]

"Gilas Pilipinas at ang Pinoy sa Japan"
A View from the Bleachers by Kin Acallar

Disclaimer: If you are looking for some technical write-ups of the game, you are in the wrong page :)

Dear Gilas,

Parang kahapon lang un last year na nandito kayo sa Tokyo. Kitang kita namin kung gaano kayo kagigil maiuwi ang kampyonato. Kaya lang dobleng heartache sa Pinas un last year e. Sinamahan pa ng balita na talo tayo sa bidding. E tingnan mo naman ngayon, biglang turn of events. Dobleng kasiyahan din ang dulot ngayon kasi tau na ang home court tapos lusot pa tayo pa Spain next year. Dapat nga ay matawa ako kay Mico Halili na halos mangiyak ngiyak habang nagbabalita after ng game with Korea e ang siste, tinatawanan na pala ako ng asawa ko kasi naman ako pala itong patulo na ang luha habang nanonood. E ganun talaga, Pinoy ako e. Alam ko basta puso ang labanan, panalo tayo diyan.

In hindsight, I look back and realized how you already made all of us 'champions' even a year ago. You came to Japan, played your best and showed the world the Filipino brand of basketball. We saw the hope burning in your eyes and that same hope you reflected to our kababayans here in Japan was to us almost like bringing home the bacon. Yes, in spite of the speed bullet train, unlimited sushi, high tech gadgets, etc. we enjoy here, we have our own share of heartaches away from homeland. Thank you for those few days when you helped us forget we were in a foreign land as we felt we were in Araneta hearing those "Ginebra," and 'defense!' cheers from our kababayan. Thank you for being our front liners in this endeavor.

I was there, perhaps unseen and unheard. In fact I, with the other Filipinos in Japan, were there with you. We practiced and played along with you. We also got hurt, disappointed but every time you rose to the challenge, you took us with you, in this journey, and perhaps far beyond. You may have not heard our whispered prayers for your success and safety during each of your games. But thank you as you took us to the TEAM, and let us play the game PILIPINAS love the most.

photo courtesy of Mico Halili / Twitter @micohalili
Photo courtesy of Twitter/Mico Halili @micohalili

You took time to wave at us, look us in the eye, shake our hands, and make our existence acknowledged while we look around and saw the other race longing to get the same attention from their national team. We supported you, not only because you are our national team, but because we saw your 'heart' in what you were doing. You brought with you the 'pusong Pinoy' and shared it with us, so that even in just a couple of days, we would feel home.

You showed us what unity was all about. Know thy self, thy role, and thy team, the knowledge of your capabilities and limitations has enabled each one to recognize how truly valuable you are in the making of OUR-TEAM. Your offense was fluid and well executed and in defense you were unforgiving. You were ONE cohesive unit in all facets and getting better and stronger in spite of any limitations.

And in this recent feat, you have proven once again that many great things can be achieved, no matter how difficult circumstances may seem and no matter how limited resources may have been, only if we are willing to work hard, play our role, make some sacrifices for the greater glory. We do not only rejoice because you made it to Spain next year but because you shared with us that glory. In almost all the interviews we've seen, you never failed to emphasize the greatness not of your own skills, but the complementary skills that made that play possible and acknowledged those cheering fans that sustained you during the games. In fact, Marc Pingris could have claim that feature in the Ryzza Mae show, but his words “Hindi namin magagawa ito kung wala ang Pilipino” were such music to our ears. Humility indeed is virtue because you have realized your role, more than that, you have accepted to heart the challenges your role requires. You have sacrificed, no doubt, you can all be great scorers, but you set personal accolades aside for the sake of THE TEAM and for that we commend you even more.

I don’t know where this leads but one thing is certain, regardless where and how this trip ends, there is nothing that can take away that pride. I am proud of what you have achieved, prouder to have met you and watched you play live and proudest that you carry and raised the Philippine flag with utmost dignity and pride. Don’t be saddened by defeat, for sure there will be more, losses inspire and ignite the spirit to transcend defeat because it brings out the best in us even more. Remember, we have an asset that is so unique from the rests of our competitors: PUSO.

But just like what you have proven, there is always a rainbow after the rain. The great turn of events that showed us great opportunities of further proving our selves. We still look out for that great turn of events where we may hail winners. Perhaps not only for ourselves, but for the entire nation as well. Salamat Gilas Pilipinas, sa puso, sa pag-asa, at sa pagbubunyi sa mahal nating bayan. Sabi nga ni Pnoy, ang sarap maging Pilipino sa mga panahong ito. (Basta wala munang kasamang usaping PDAF at JLN para happy lang, bawal nga ang sad sabi ni Aleng Maliit),

Thank you for showing what our country needs now. You are an inspiration not only to the Filipinos back home, but to us here who never tire watching your games and cheering for you, this time not from the bleachers but from our own small units in Japan (Muntik pa nga kami mapapulis ng kapitbahay sa lakas ng sigawan namin sa bawat steal, rebound at shoot nyo ng bola.)

And please know when you are in Spain, your home court is still with you. We are there, we have always been with you. Goodluck and mabuhay kayo!


Ang Pinoy sa Japan