December 1, 2023

Once again, the fighting stance of athletes in the Cordillera has proven its worth in international sports competitions with their recent topnotch performances in the dance and combat sports events of the ongoing 30th Southeast Asian Games being hosted by the country until Dec. 11.
For them and all those who are still on their way of clinching podium finishes in their respective events as of press time, we extend our grandest salute for a job well done.
It makes us proud that Cordillera athletes have focused on keeping their form and are on giving their best shot – with some of them showing no fear of treading on unfamiliar waters or lesser known fields – in front of formidable opponents from other countries, all for the glory of the region they represent and of the country, which is currently at the top of the medal haul standing.
The gold, silver, and bronze medals from dance sports, kurash, wushu-sanda, arnis non-traditional open weapon, padded stick events, Muay Thai, and obstacle course racing that the Cordillera prides have so far raked in and contributed to the country’s top standing should leave no doubt about the exceptional talents of our athletes, not only in the mainstream sports disciplines. We heard of many success stories about athletes from the Cordillera who are known for their innate passion for their chosen craft, as well as those who rose from nothing, and those made tough and trained under harsh and unfavorable conditions, including lack of support, but who still are able to shine in the international stage.
And they all come back to pay tribute to the Cordillera blood running in their veins, which is that of a fighter who would never give up.
Having the home court advantage and having to perform in front of their own people were surely a big factor in their inspired performances, but we believe that their first-rate finishes are no accident or just out of pure luck. It is just that oftentimes in the past that the sports sector was not given enough support, being far below in the list of priorities of the government. A case in point is a Filipino-American chess master who decided to transfer in the U.S., claiming he was not getting sufficient support from the national chess federation. Some have to scrounge for support through solicitations for food, transportation, or training equipment. Others lack sports facilities, or fail to convince to be worthy of training support, only to be commended after succeeding on their own.
It would not come as a surprise therefore if many young individuals with potentials to make it big in various sports arenas are never able to make it because they were handicapped from the beginning.
More than the millions worth of monetary incentives the national government and their respective local government units have committed to award to sterling finishes in any of the SEA Games and other international sports events, it is our hope that concerned agencies would take a second look on the need for training support for all those interested to pursue a career in sports.We believe that it is a way of boosting the performance of athletes during competitions, one that does not leave their fate to pure luck.
Give our athletes our full support, not only because they may do well in competitions and bring home the bacon, but also because it is one way of helping them build their character and hone an upright personality, choose a craft that suits them, and become a productive citizen. Winning gold, silver, or bronze should be a pleasant icing on the cake but a tangible proof of our support to our athletes. For us, it is one way of winning as one.