Wednesday, 20 April 2011


by Earlie Doriman
Manny 'PACMAN' Pacquiao, considered the sports hero of the Philippines
Filipinos and the world have another big event to look forward to next Month. On May 7, 2011, Manny Pacquiao, the Philippines sports hero, will climb into the boxing arena again to prove his power against the much bigger opponent and highly regarded Shane Mosley. Manny Pacquiao or simply ‘PACMAN’ earned the admiration of boxing fans by collecting eight championship belts in eight divisions. His last battle against Antonio Margarito was the best fight to remember when he demonstrated in 12 exciting rounds why he deserves to be called the best pound-for-pound boxer of the world.
I used to know Manny Pacquiao as an ordinary person who aside from doing professional boxing, was also a very good billiard player. If my memory serves me right, it was between 1998-2004 when I could always spot him playing in one of Davao City’s ( Davao is a progressive city of southern Philippines) billiard halls along Bolton Street.

I could guess that Pacquiao was there because the place would usually turn crowded and bursting with spectators. Being a fan myself, I took all chances to see him closer and watched him played his other favourite past time. He was already a known boxer at that time but not as famous as today. He had already bundles of cash, but not as wealthy as now. He was lively and he cracked jokes at times that amused his fans around. He was already a kind person and as generous as he is at present.
I could not forget those times when he handed 100-peso bill to ordinary fans around him after his billiard games. Win or lose he was willing to share his blessings. With the absence of cameras and press, it was not for publicity I am certain. It was a genuine gesture of simple charity. It was very admirable that is why he was so loved by majority of Davaoenos. His popularity and fortune did not change him at all. As I see it, he is still that ordinary person who played billiard and enjoyed with the crowd.
What makes Manny Pacquiao remarkably different from the rest of boxers is that in spite of his fame and popularity he remains down to earth and kind. He stays to be an ordinary person in the midst of his fortune. That alone spells a profound inspiration to the Filipino people and his fights were the best reasons there could be to unite a country blown apart by poverty and corruption. Many Pacquiao is indeed a great champion not only in boxing but more importantly, he is a champion by heart and humility.

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