USED to sitting in the best seats in PBA and Gilas Pilipinas games, the PBA board of governors did not mind sitting in the gallery section of the Seonhak Gymnasium to show support for the Filipino boxers.
PBA commissioner Chito Salud and chairman Patrick Grgeorio led the board of governors in supporting the campaign of our boxers who are now assured of atleast four bronze medals in the Incheon Asian Games in South Korea.
Aliiance of Boxing Association of the Philippines president Ricky Vargas expressed his gratitude to the PBA bigwigs not just for showing up at the venue, but for also travelling three long hours from Seoul to Incheon just to support the boxers.
“Salamat sa PBA sa inyong suporta. Tunay kayong mga sportsmen. Ang laking bagay ng inyong pagpunta para sumigaw para sa ating mga boxers,” said Vargas.
“Ang nakakatuwa, sila pa ang taga sigaw ng boxers natin dun sa taas. Sa taas lang sila naupo eh. Sa gallery,” added the Talk 'N Text governor.
Abap executive director Ed Picson for his part bared that problems with accreditation prevented them from giving the PBA officials the due seating assignments.
“Nahihiya nga kami kasi hindi namin sila naikuha ng magandang upuan. Problema nga bleachers lang sila dahil ang accreditation dito mahirap makuha eh. Pero Commissioner Chito Salud and chairman Patrick Gregorio and the rest of the PBA bosses were here,” Picson said.
“Saktong sakto talaga ang pagdating nila dahil outnumbered tayo ng fan support dahil marami ring supporters yung ibang delegasyon dito, lalo 'yun malalaking bilang ng delegasyon nila,” he said.
“We are so honored and happy to see them. We didn’t expect them to go all out in supporting us,” said the former sports broadcaster who also acknowledged the presence of officials from the Philippine Sports Commission and the Philippine Olympic Committee.
Aside from Salud and Gregorio, also present in the boxing match were PBA media bureau chief Willie Marcial, Robert Non (San Miguel), Rene Pardo (San Mig), Erick Arejola (Globalport), Manny Alvarez (Barako Bull), Alfrancis Chua (Ginebra), Dickie Bachmann (Alaska), Al Panlilio (Meralco), Atty Mert Mondragon (Rain or Shine), Silliman Sy (Blackwater), Ginia Domingo (Kia) and Ramoncito Fernandez (NLEX).
Filipino boxers meanwhile did not let their supporters down as four pugs moved to the semifinals.
Middleweight Wilfredo Lopez stunned Shinebayar Narmandakh of Monglia with a first round TKO, to arrange a final four match versus Odai Riyad Alhindawi of Jordan on Thursday night.
Bantamweight Mario Fernandez faces China’s Zhang Jiawei for the right to move to the gold medal round, the same target for light flyweight Mark Anthony Barriga who will face hometown bet Shin Jong Hun. Lightweight Charly Suarez battles Mohammada Mustafa Alkasbeh of Jordan.
The PBA bosses, who are in Korea for their annual planning session, also came in full force to support Gilas Pilipinas’ last game in Incheon versus the Mongolia.