Thursday, November 17, 2011

Unconvincing win, but still a win

Manny Pacquiao has practically turned his fights into opportunities for celebration—for Filipinos. For Pacquiao fights, they swarm bars and malls offering pay-per-view, while their families wait with some excitement for the wonderful news that Manny has won. Others listen to the live broadcast on radio, like what older Filipinos used to do before television came about. Even the incidence of crime in the whole country falls when Pacquiao fights. And most families spend the day together watching the fight on free TV.

Last Sunday, Manny won again over Juan Manuel Marquez. Two of the three judges scored the fight for the pound-for-pound king, and the third saw it even.
But many disagree. They are saying that Marquez was robbed of his victory. The sad part of this story is, many of those claiming that Pacquiao lost are Filipinos. Yes, his own countrymen.

I have been watching Pacquiao’s fight, via pay-per-view, since he fought Ricky Hatton. I am convinced that he won each of those fights, though not necessarily every round.  I am not a boxing expert, but neither am I completely ignorant about the sport. I understand enough of it as I do of basketball and soccer.

Manny’s most recent victory may not have been as convincing as his domination of Mosley, Margarito, Clottey, Cotto, etc. But a win is a win, and he clearly won, according to the decision of judges who are boxing experts.

It is sad to hear and see Filipinos taking from Manny a victory he richly deserves. At the same time, I feel sorry for these ungracious and ungrateful Filipinos. It is as if they are disowning a hero who has rescued them. I don’t exactly know how they identify a kababayan, but I’m sure, he or she is not necessarily Hispanic-looking.

Their disappointment with Manny likely stems from his failure to knock out Marquez. Or, maybe, they are angry because they lost their bets. And maybe it is for these reasons that they now say Manny lost in his third fight with Marquez.

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