SEAG around the corner, but how and where to watch the games?


Twenty seven days from today, the region’s sporting world will celebrate the 30th edition of the Southeast Asian Games (SEAG), a once every-two-year competitions among the best and the finest athletes from this shore.

Outside of those who are connected with the Philippine Southeast Asian Games Organizing Committee (Phisgoc), no one really knows, what the occasion is all about, what sports are to be contested, and where they will be held.

Except that hostilities are scheduled in several clusters in Central Luzon, (New Clark City in Pampanga and Tarlac, and Subic), Metro Manila and several areas in Southern and Northern Luzon.

Those who want to answer invitations and appeals to watch their favorite athletes in action are still at a loss where to go. It looks like the men and women tasked of coming out with the needed official announcements are incapable of doing their jobs or simply ignorant of what they’re there for.

Media outlets, meanwhile, are being bombarded with queries, in regards to these questions daily. The Games’ official broadcaster kept on barking for the public to support our athletes and the country’s campaign for medals. But where to go for the purpose couldn’t be furnished.

Except for a regularly running teaser that features a slogan “Sama-sama sa SEA Games, kasama si ________ (name of the media network owner).” There’s an improvement, though, the past week or so, describing what and how the sports in the 56-sport calendar are played.

One particular sport, new event (Esports) that is being run regularly, minute by minute), that even introduces the composition of the Philippine team in the event. It looks like a paid ad, though, leading observers and a few national sports associations to remark, “para ka pala ma-mention man lang sa teaser, kailangan magbayad ka.”

This columnist, who is hosting the revived Scoop (Sports Communicators Organization of the Philippines) Forum, asked one guy close to an Esports group whether I can invite the team in one of our episodes so the public may know how the contingent will fare in their well-publicized campaign for medals and was shocked being told: “Magkano ibabayad n’yo?”

“Ah, may bayad ba? “I retorted. Di bale na lang, ‘yung ibang sports na lang imbitahin namin na alam naming mas maraming medalyang ipananalo.” That conversation, further raised by apprehension on the inclusion of that event in the SEA Games calendar. Esports, you see, is a discipline that induces the youth to gambling and in addition, it promotes violence.

Speaking of the Scoop Weekly Forum, it was the revival of the old Scoop Sa Kamayan sessions that started in 1987 and, thus, already, is an institution. As I mentioned in passing in my past columns, I revived it through the prodding of The Manila Times Chairman Emeritus, Dante A. Ang. It’s now televised, aired over The Manila Times TV every Friday evening at 8 o’clock. The Talakayan is being taped Thursday morning.

To the still uninitiated, tune in every Friday evening at The Manila Times TV doon malalaman ninyong lahat ng dapat ninyong malaman tungkol sa SEA Games. Promise.

Read , too, The Manila Times cuz yours truly makes it a point to write stories in what transpired at a particular Scoop Talakayan. Those stories also find prints in several newspapers in the form of press release.

There are kasi members of sports media commissioned by both the POC, the PSC and even the Phisgoc, precisely on the Games and the ongoing preparations, but seldom do what they’re supposed to do.

I was able to talk to one of them and asked him why so. The answer shocked me. Eh ang usapan kasi sa aktuwal Games lang ako babayaran, so bakit ako magsusulat tungkol sa preparasyon? Tama rin naman ang gunggong. Kinukuripot eh.

Co-hosted by Agnes Razal and Dzi Gervacio, we have, so far, already featured our national teams in athletics, taekwondo, boxing and billiards and snooker. The Scoop, has, likewise, the Diliman Preparatory School’s sports development program, in connection with the celebration of the educational institution’s Golden Anniversary with, who-else, but DPS president, ex-Sen. Nikki Coseteng as resource person.

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