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List of Articles by Eddie Alinea


 

PH SENATE PAYS TRIBUTE TO OLYMPIC SILVER MEDALIST HIDILYN DIAZ

By Eddie Alinea
PhilBoxing.com
18 Aug 2016



The Philippine Senate paid tribute to the newest Filipino sports hero, weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz, who brought honor to the country by stashing away with the silver medal in the women's weightlifting event in the on-going Games of the XXXI Olympiad in the Brazilan city of Rio.

Acting on a resolution authored by boxing icon-turned Senator Manny Pacquiao and subscribed to by six of his colleagues through separate resolutions, the Upper Chamber honored the pint-sized Zamboanga City girl who ended up second to eventual winner Hsu Shu-Ching of Chinese Taipei in the 53-kilogram discipline in weightlifting.

During its 12th session held Wednesday, the Senate, likewise, approved a motion of its past President Franklin Drilon awarding the 25-year-old Diaz of a bonus the amount of which will be decided by Senate President Koko Pimentel and taken from the Chamber's savings.

Pacquiao, for his part, gifted Diaz a check, also of undisclosed amount from his own pocket in his office after the recognition ceremony.

Joining Pacquiao in filing separate resolutions that was incorporated to that of the Sarangani solon's were Majority Floor Leader Tito Sotto, a former national athlete like the eight-division champion, Diaz, and Senators Jayvee Ejercito, Nancy Binay, Sonny Angara, Loren Legarda, Joel Villanueva and Migs Zubiri.

"For 20 long years, we'd been starved of an Olympic medal of any color. In this year's Games, Hidilyn gave us reason to celebrate by gifting the country enormous honor in the form of a silver medal in weightlifting in the 2016 Rio Olympics," Pacquiao declared in his sponsorship speech.

He was referring to a similar silver medal finish fashioned out by boxer Mansueto "Onyok" Velasco during the Greatest Show On Earth's 1996 Centennial Celebration held in Atlanta.

"Hidilyn, alam kong hindi naging madali ang iyong paglalakbay upang marating mo ang inyong kinaroroonan ngayon. Hinarap mo ang mabibigat na hamon at muntik ka nang sumuko (Hidilyn, I know it had not been easy for you to reach where you are now. You faced the challenge and you almost surrendered)," Pacquiao remarked.

"Ganoon pa man, nagbunga ang lahat ng iyong paghihirap. Simula sa Zamboanga, patungo sa Houston, Texas, kung saan pinarangalan mo ang Pilipinas sa pagwawagi ng tatlong bronze medals sa IWF world Championships hanggang marating mo ang Rio Olympics (Your sacrifices reaped their fruits when you won three bronze medals in the World Championships in Houston to reach the Rio Olympics)," he said.

"Hidilyn, You are he first female athlete and the first weightlifter from our country to win a medal in he Olympics. With this, I personally congratulate you for being triumphant in the Olympics, the Philippines is very proud of you," the only man on earth to win world title from flyweight to junior middleweight asserted.

"Ngayon, ikinagagalak ng ating Senate President, at ng aking mga kapuwa Senador, at ng buong Pili[inas, narito ka bilang isang world-class athlete (Our Senate President, my fellow Senators and the entire country are glad with your presence here as a world-class athlete)," Pacquiao said.

Diaz was accompanied in the Senate by her personal coach Elmer Atilano, national mentor and Zamboanga City councilors, John Edding and Meng Agan.

Photo: Filipino weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz visits the Philippine Senate where she was recognized and honored for bagging the silver medal at this year's Summer Olympics in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil.


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