WE WILL FIGHT WITH OUR BOYS!
By Rich Mazon
Tue, 04 Dec 2012
They say that the Philippines is experiencing "The Golden Age of Boxing!" And that statement comes with valid reasons to support that.
Boxing events permeate the whole Philippine archipelago, from up north in Baguio City to further south in Agusan.
Major television network that only broadcast basketball games in the past now has boxing events of present and past in their lineup of shows. Major corporations provide their sponsorship and time to these events, and its participants.
The most popular and most awarded boxer of today is a full blooded Filipino.
Emmanuel "Manny" Pacquiao, the former stow-away and donut peddler in the streets of southern Philippines is the most recognizable name in the sport.
His accomplishments on and off the squared ring is a well-chronicled story. His popularity and charisma crosses all borders and that he attracts people from all walks of life both in his country and abroad.
But Pacquiao's undeniable contribution is to the sport of boxing itself, to Philippine boxing in particular.
Pacquiao opened the door towards big -time boxing for his fellow Pinoy pugilists. He is the inspiration of every Filipino teenager who has dreams of entering the sport. He has paved the road for opportunities for his fellow Pinoy fighters in the U.S., Mexico and other big boxing venues of the world.
He is the leader of the pack, a pack of hungry, determined and motivated present day gloved warriors.
And next weekend, he will lead five of them to battle in no less than the Fight Capital of the World!
Mercito Gesta, Michael Farenas, Ernie Sanchez and Dodie Boy Penalosa Jr. will see action next Saturday at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. They will all do separate battle before Pacquiao takes on his biggest rival in the ring.
And welterweight Dennis Laurente will fight the day before in a Friday night card.
That is five Filipinos in the biggest boxing event of the year and six overall for the last major Fight Week of 2012. That is an unprecedented feat for Philippine boxing.
The MGM Grand Garden Arena and the millions watching on television will test the vocal chords of our "kababayans" and our flags will wave all night inside the arena.
This is not just a card with Pacquiao in it. This is a card with our fellow countrymen in it.
And Filipinos will be watching on Saturday night in the West and on Sunday morning in the East, because this is our Super Bowl, our World Cup and our Olympic main event.
There in the streets of General Santos, in a stadium in Mandaue City, in a Nipa hut in Leyte, in a sari-sari store with a television set in Sorsogon.
Boxing fans, sports fans and Filipinos of all walks of life will be gathered around a television set, a projection screen and a movie theatre showing the fights.
And Filipinos from all corners of the world will be watching with them. There in the wintry United States, they will be gathered with their favorite dishes and drinks beside family and friends.
They will be watching in their flats in the United Kingdom, they will be throwing parties Down Under in Sydney. They will take a day off from work and get together in a friend's house in the Dubai. They will have fun in the company of friends in Japan and scream to the top of their lungs when our boxers step in the ring to fight.
Our flags will wave all night inside the arena and our pride will beam after every victory, wherever we are at that time.
Because this is not only Pacquiao, Gesta, Farenas, Sanchez, Penalosa Jr. or Laurente's fight, this is also our fight.
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