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Why are we crazy on NBA and not sepak takraw?

By Rommel Panero

We are a colonial, inferior race indeed. Little brown flat-nose American pretenders who mimic and go crazy on American imports, mostly junk.

Go ahead, get offended and deny. We are good at it too. We are the ultimate copycats of Western entertainment–their screaming and gutsy but untalented entertainers are ours too.

We emulate their kind of fashion too, that is why we have fashion disasters as well, and the “ukay-ukay” is never run out of fashion because we have poor taste, literally and otherwise.

The last few days, Pinoys are agog on US basketball, idolizing players like national heroes who can save their poverty or escape from it. Even national broadsheets gave front-page coverage to it.

Ay naku! Ano bang US state tayo! I know this is not acceptable, popular idea. But somebody has it say it.

Every barangay in this country have basketball courts, a testament of our misplace obsession and yet no Pinoy had even or will be a world-class basketball player. Ad why should there be? The sport is not meant for little brown race. There’s a mix Visayan-Tagalog word for it-“Dili bagay.” But we blindly pursue it because we are a rotten colonial race!

We have our own Pinoy basketball teams on national TV but its more of commercial entertainment and look how the players ended as they retire? They turned like childish entertainers on sitcoms and advertisements. We idolize our sports like this?

Our education sector puts basketball and other western imitated sports on priority and we have never harvested world-class athletes ever.

Our dismal record even in Southeast Asia is embarrassing. Again because we have misplace priorities other than poor training program and wanting discipline-always a loser in world sports events, always looking up at the kind of “dili angayan” sport we can never excel at in the world arena.

But what particular team sport every Pinoy can rise with excellence for the world to see? Sepak takraw! Ignorant people may laugh but the sport is much challenging and even awesome and entertaining to watch. It takes a stronger, flexible and powerful athlete to play it more than anything else. Sadly, Pinoys don’t give it significance.

An Asian sport expert explain it is ideal for Pinoys because no height is required and Pinoys proved to be versatile and aggressive.

This Malay-initiated sport event is gaining ground and recognition worldwide and you can be sure Pinoy athletes with its homegrown flair added with intense discipline will steal thunder from other countries, count in the Western athletes who “can’t jump.”

A fresh new way of thinking and openness is needed and wait till you see the game and you will agree how amazing the athletes can and required to do-this should be the world sports of this generation.

And Pinoys will never be left behind. Maybe we need the president to intervene?

Artwork courtesy of


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