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    PH flag bearer Jason Balabal honors Igorot roots by wearing 'bahag' in SEA Games opening

    Dec 4, 2013

    WRESTLER Jason Balabal will wear the traditional ‘bahag’ outfit when he carries the Philippine flag during the traditional march past of athletes in the opening ceremony of the 27th Southeast Asian Games on December 11 at the Wunna Theikdi Stadium in Naypyitaw, Myanmar.

    PH delegation chef de mission Jeff Tamayo said parading in such get-up will showcase the Filipinos’ spirit and culture as the country joins 10 other nations when the Games are formally declared open.

    Aside from being a wrestler, Tamayo said Balabal is also a certified Igorot, making him the perfect model to wear the outfit.

    “We want to show ‘yung dugong warrior ng mga Pilipino as well as ‘yung traditional culture by wearing a bahag,” said Tamayo, a known advocate of ethnic groups, having been the organizer of the Tribal Games in the past.

    Balabal is aiming for a third straight SEA Games gold medal since first competing in the meet in 2009 in Laos.

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