Wednesday, August 17, 2011

International Champion PHL Dragon Boat Rowers Unwelcomed by POC

PHL Dragon Warriors
PHL Cobra Dragon Boat Team
The PHL Dragon Boat Team after winning the championship in the 10th International Dragon Boat Federation World Championship, Sunday, August 7, 2011 in Tampa Bay, Florida was disowned by the Philippine Olympic Committee for alleged cheating due to "technicalities", but yet they were honored by some Filipinos in Florida and will be honored in their own locality too, the news said.

Though "badmouth... unsupported... unloved by Phillipine sports officials", they still got the guts to succeed, the will to survive though no cash incentives, no heroes welcome. They still  excelled at the boat rowing competition, garnered 5 golds, 2 silvers and established a new world record.

Australia placed second in the event and Japan came in third.

"Plain View" columnist, Atty. Romeo V. Pefianco of the national paper here wrote that last Friday (August 12), President Noynoy himself extended a heroes' welcome to the paddlers' small delegation, and commended the honor they didn't get from POC and PSC.

"The Dragon Boat team received a presidential citation for winning five gold and two silver medals and breaking two world records at the 10th International Dragon Boat Federation World Championships. The President vowed to rid sports of politics and scolded the sports officials for playing politics, saying politics should be left to politicians," informed Pefianco.

Six of these rowers who live in Brgy. Latasan, E. B. Magalona, Negros Occidental, Philippines are cousins. They are Salvador Sumagaysay, 29, Joemar Ocquiana, 32, Rico Pradilla, 38, Crisanto Pabulayan, 30, Junrey Dayumat and Ma. Aileen Padrones, who are all cousins and residents of Brgy. Latasan in E. B. Magalona.

Earlier Governor Alfredo Marañon, Jr. of Negros Occidiental has offered to take charge of the airplane fare of these six when they arrive in Manila and will give them P5,000 cash incentives each and a plaque of appreciation, the local news said.

And E. B. Magalona Mayor David Albert Lacson will also give an additional cash incentives of P5,000 each and a luncheon party will be ready for them and for their families next week.

"We will honor our very own paddlers, our heroes so their stories and hardships will serve as aspirations to our young Saraviahanons (popular name for residents of E. B. Magalona) that there's nothing impossible if you set your mind to it," the Mayor said.

The Sangguniang Bayan (Municipal Council) of E. B. Magalona passed a resolution commending the six Saraviahanon "Dragon Warriors".

Bacolod Representative Anthony Rolando Golez also filed House Resolution No. 1585 Monday congratulating and commending this Philippine dragon boat rowing team.

The story behind the participation of these six Saraviahanon:

Rico was the first to join the team after he was invited by his cousin, Susan Dellomes, who once worked as house helper in Manila.

Dellomes’ employer in Manila was the one who recruited Rico in 1995. A year after, Rico invited his cousins until they formed the Philippine dragon boat racing team with members mostly natives of Latasan.

Rodolfo Ocquiana, Joemar’s father, said more cousins would have wanted to join the Philippine team to Florida but they had no money for air fare.

"But we’re thankful that our mayor (Lacson) will honor our sons soon," said Mrs. Crisanto.

Merlinda Dioneo, punong barangay of Latasan, said they’re now doing their best to help the town in rendering heroes’ welcome for her six constituents.

With this dismal scenario and with exceptional performances in international competitions the PHL Dragon Boat team has accomplished, Senator Pia Cayetano wants to determine what standards and requirements were used by PSC and POC in accrediting and providing support to National Sports Associations (NSAs), like the experience of PDBF team which had been denied recognition and support.

"We want to find out how come our Philippine Dragon Boat Team, which is acknowledged as one of the best and one of the most feared in international competitions, is not recognized as national athletes and are being denied the support they deserve in their very own country," Cayetano said.

To this effect, Sen. Cayetano has filed Philippine Senate Resolution (PSR) No. 550 to commend the PDBF; and PSR No.551 to invest, in aid of legislation, into the non-accreditation and denial of support to the PDBF by the national sports bodies.

Dragon boat racing  is an amateur watersport which has its roots in an ancient folk ritual of contending villagers held over the past 2000 years throughout southern China. While 'competition' has taken place annually for more than 20 centuries as part of religious ceremonies and folk customs, dragon boat racing has emerged in modern times as an international sport, beginning in Hong Kong in 1976.

"Pinoy paddlers are considered sprint kings of the dragon boat." - Dyan Castillejo

"Keep the faith amidst all the obstacles," - Coach Annabs



  1. I am sad that the Phil. Dragon Boat Team, were not recognize by the POC but at least Seantor Pia Cayetano is standing for them. I hope these heroes would receive proper support and recongnition.

  2. Allegedly sabi nila, matatanda na sila eh, (the national sport body is referring to the organizer). What the heck! Be it young or old, they should be afforded the appropriate recognition for the honor and the prestige they have achieved for the country. Could there be lapses or misunderstanding they should resolve it internally.

  3. I agree with Sey. Hindi kasi mga gwapo at magaganda ang kasapi ng grupo na ito kaya hindi sila nabibigyang pansin. This is really sad, knowing the basis of Filipinos on which athletes are they going to support to. Kita naman natin ang karangalang binigay nila sa bansa ay higit pa sa nabigay ng Azkals at Volcanoes. Pero sino ang sikat? Tsk.

  4. The Philippine Dragon Boat Team brought pride to the country. But sad for the heroes, for not given recognition and support from the government. I wish the Dragon Warriors good luck and be blessed this year!

  5. my brothers compete in china and represent the philippines for the dragonboat competition ... they never had any support from the government either ... shame on our government

  6. it is amazing that some of these champion rowers are Negrenses.

  7. I've watched a news on tv before about them but I have no idea that they were disowned by the POC. Too bad.. but I guess it became a challenge for them to persevere and succeed! :)

  8. really amazing, the time they visit Legazpi City, its really jaw-dropping, ang galing kasi nila :)

  9. I always heard it on Papa Jack program in love radio FM asking for the donation because no one want to sponsor them, yet they are representing our contry

  10. After what this team did for our country in the international sports arena, they don't deserve this kind of's so sad to think about it.

  11. I love the Dragon Boat Team inspite of the issues...Wa care na lang.... :)

  12. Until today, this issue is yet to be resolved, and as long as politicking continues in Philippine sports, expect more disasters.

  13. Out of topic, hmm sir? ganu ktgal n ung ads nyo sa clicksor? for me kc di ko nagagandahan yan e, mdlas kc may ngpopopup ads. and nkakaasar as viewer yun.

  14. Theirs is actually an inspiring story; a classic example of winning against all odds, looking forward to the crown and overlooking the hurdles, instead, overtaking them. Since it was not inspired by monetary prize, their winning became priceless.

  15. They should never give up! El que no espira vencir ya esta vendido!

    If the POC don't recognize them then their is something wrong with the POC. Why would they overlook great talent because of age?

    It is good to know that Sen.Pia Cayetano has filed Philippine Senate Resolution (PSR) No. 550 to commend the PDBF; and PSR No.551 to invest, in aid of legislation, into the non-accreditation and denial of support to the PDBF by the national sports bodies.

    Let's support the Philippine Dragon Boat Team! Mabuhay!

  16. this is so frustrating... no long-term plans for the sports program, no support and no recognition. the government i guess only knows one sport - boxing. it's so sad for a sports fan here. i've been longing to see our national team succeed in the international arena - but with their spirits not up tempo, it would remain a dream for long...

    the PDBT don't deserve the snub at all

  17. That's unbelievable! The Philippine Dragon Boat Team should be recognized, for they deserve it! I hope that other Senators would support the Senate Resolution 550 by Sen. Pia Cayetano. These guys should be given a pat on the back!


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