Philippines, 26 Oct 2014
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Shame and scandal in Little League Series


PhilBoxing.com


PORTLAND, Oregon (via Pera Padala) -- There seems no end in sight to the scandals marking Bacolod City's participation in the Little League International's regional and World Series tournaments resulting in immeasurable embarrassment to the country's image in the international sporting scene.

The latest of such scandalous occurrences happened in the on-going Major League World Series for girls softball where a team from Bacolod, for winning the AsiaPacific elimination, is supposed to represent the country and the region, in the 11-12 bracket tournament.


But while everything was believed to have been put in place for the opening last Aug 12 at the Alpenrose ballpark heere came the news that the Philippine Series and Asia Pacific champions from the "City of Smile" won't be coming.
An email message from the office of Little League Philippines president Jolly Gomez simply stated that the Bacolod girls had not been allowed to fly to Portland in the absence of an adult companion.

The reason given, according to Major League tournament director Regina Strickland, who admitted she had a nightmare in revising the pre-planned schedule of games, was that team manager Dina Barlita had a family emergency in Bacolod and could not accompany the girls in the trip.

The coach, Melanie Gonzales had earlier been denied visa by the U.S. Embassy in Manila.

Strickland, quoting the letter of Gomez, who is also the Little League International district administrator to the Philippines and newly-appointed Philippines Sports Commission commissioner, said that re-booking the flight of the whole team to allow one other adult official to accompany the girls would already be impossible because of the proximity of the opening.

The catch, however, was that members of the irate Filipino community in Portland had received information that Barlita had gone ahead of the team and had, in fact, seen to have arrived in Los Angeles in California a few days before the team's departure from Manila.

Why and how she went ahead of the team, leaders and members of the Filipino community would like to know, especially with reports saying that said delegation official was said to be carrying funds the team needs in its stay in the U.S.

Plane fares of team members and their coaches were supposed to be shouldered by the Little League International as subsidy for winning the Asia Pacific championship.
The entire delegation had even been granted courtesy call by the new Philippine Sportrs Commission board of commissioners, headed by chair Richie Garcia.

Photo taken in the sendoff ceremony showed Barlita there along with Garcia and commissioners Gomez himself, Chito Loyzaga and Buddy Andrada. The same photo was used in the World Series' souvenir program.
Reason why it is held likely that the PSC might have granted financial assistance to the delegation


Click here to view a list of other articles written by Eddie Alinea.


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