Philippine Showbiz Today Vol 14 No 6 - Page 22

22 Philippine Showbiz Today October March 22 - November 22 - April 7, 2017 2019 Pacquiao could fight Spence next In the absence of a clear indication from Floyd Mayweather Jr., Manny Pacquiao just might settle for Errol Spence Jr. as his next foe. It may not necessarily be the big blockbuster fight the 40-year- old Pacquiao is chasing this late in his career, but it will prove that the Filipino global superstar is ready to take on anybody. Pacquiao was at ringside Saturday evening and saw for himself how Spence scored a convincing decision over Mikey Garcia at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. When Spence invited him to the ring after the fight, for possible square off in July, Pacquiao gamely quipped “Why not? We will give the fans a good fight.” “I’m so happy to be here in Dallas and I’m hoping I will be back here soon,” added Pacquiao. Spence said: “He (Pacquiao) is a legend of the sport. He’s broken records here before, it would be my honor to fight him next.” Mayweather was also there and had a brief encounter with Pacquiao. The meet-up only added to the buzz surrounding the prospects of a rematch, which at this point could be the biggest thing in boxing. Mayweather triumphed in their clash on May 2015, a victory by unanimous decision before the Filipino later on admitted to fighting with an injured shoulder. Pacquiao earlier said he would like to fight either May or July with whoever his promotions outfit Premier Boxing Champions puts in front of him. Spence is just one of the many young, skillful and hungry welterweights around wanting a piece of Pacquiao in a megabuck fight. Also in that list are WBO champ Terence Crawford, WBC titlist Shawn Porter and WBA super champion Keith Thurman. Spence successfully retained his IBF crown over Garcia via a unanimous decision. Judges scored the 12-round bout 120- 107, 120-108, 120-108. Pacquiao is the WBA regular champion, having wrested it from Lucas Matthysse last July in Kuala Lumpur, and defended it over Adrien Broner last January. ● - M.A. Reyes, Inq Philippines boasts first bobsled team The Philippines has put together a bobsled team who will try for the 2022 Beijing Olympics. It is the first bobsled team not only the Philippines, but in Southeast Asia. The members of the team are enlisted personnel of the Philippine Coast Guard, who made their international debut as one of the Asian guest racers in the 2018 Europa Cup on Friday at Olympia Eiskanal in Igls, Tirol, in Austria. According to Thelmo Cunanan Jr., president of the recently formed Philippine National Bobsled, Luge and Skeleton Association, Inc. (PNBLSA) one of their most important accomplishments is that they have proven we can form a team and compete in the sport. Cunanan said the Filipino pair, who learned the sport just a few months before the Austrian meet , got off to a rocky start in the two-man bobsled division.  The Philippine team was a guest participant of OlympiaWorld Innsbruck, which had offered to train Filipinos in the sport as well as provide technical assistance and equipment. They are currently part of the Alberta Bobsled Association and have trained in Calgary for their next run at qualifiers. Cunanan said that that one of their inspirations was the movie about the Jamaican bobsled team “Cool Runnings”. In the movie, the team’s first efforts at the sport were not that successful, but they were able to establish themselves as a winter sports team coming from a country where there is no snow, just like the Philippines. According to Cunanan on his Facebook page, “When I founded the Philippine National Bobsled Luge and Skeleton Association, one of my objectives was to establish a suitable and permanent training homebase for our organization to meet our medium and long-term objectives. There were a slew of important factors to be considered. These included: Proper fit and chemistry with the local counterpart sports organization and training and development partner; ease of communication; good travel connections; positive and welcoming local society and culture; affordable cost of living; distance to neighboring ice canals; and vibrant and broad economic environment for marketing and promotions opportunities. But one of the most crucial factors was the local Filipino community. We needed to have a dynamic, empowered, forward- looking, creative, and successful community of Filipinos, fully- integrated in their new country and led by inspired men and women of integrity, to be our partner in this endeavor and to help us with logistical challenges in our new home.” He is very grateful to the Filipino community in Calgary for supporting them while they were there, and the team hopes to also get support from other Filipino communities in Canada, thus their visit to Vancouver recently where they were received at the Philippine Consulate General in Vancouver. The team is composed of Seaman First Class Rolando Isidro Jr (pilot) and Seaman Second Class Jeffrey dela Cruz (L-R) Balitang Vancouver’s Rosette Correa, Deputy Consul Leotito Ausan, Jr., the PHL Bobsled Team The PHL Bobsled Team in Calgary, Alberta (brakeman). Part of the team also are Jerby Derada and Joseph Acosta. The team placed third in the third in Alberta Bobsleigh Provincial Championship in their North American debut in Calgary, Alberta. They worked with Canadian Olympian Lascelles Brown, who has two Olympic Medals in the sport. Brown actually played for the Jamaican National Bobsled Team in the 2002 Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City, UT before moving with his family to Canada. To support the team and its efforts to qualify for the 2022 Beijing WInter Olympics, please go to their gofundme page, https://www.gofundme.com/ philippine-bobsled-team, and like their Facebook page to show them our Canadian warmth! ● - Rosette D. Correa, BV