Saturday, December 25, 2010

Indonesia 1:0 Philippines

On the second leg, well, Indonesia scored again thanks to Uruguayan striker Gonzalez.

But this AFF Cup will not be remembered because of whoever wins the Cup, but rather, because the Philippines finally woke up in football. Proof?  The Azkals got one of the top ten stories from Sports Illustrated.

Merry Christmas to all, and Have a Happy New Year!!!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Philippines 0:1 Indonesia

On my way home, I've noticed that people did not appear hurried, quiet, unexcited, oblivious that the Azkals will compete against Indonesia in half an hour. We still have a long way to go for football to become popular in the country. After a long ride by train, I stole a look at a bar that showed the Indo vs. Phil game. The food was quite expensive. And I was mulling whether to grab a bite to eat but I was alone and the people looked too classy to befriend. I approached a waitress and asked her if the people inside were having a private function. She said "yes". Dang.  I had to watch outside.

Azkals despite showing good defense, were often outpaced and the ball often intercepted by the Indo players (Timnas). We're too slow. Deep inside, I thought that we would be outscored soon enough. The game reminded me of a Liverpool vs. Tottenham Hotspurs match that aired in Star Sports a few weeks ago. The Spurs had relied on headers and fast legs to dominate the match 2:1. I was crushed at my beloved team's loss. But it was a match I have none to blame for. The Spurs were getting better even in the Champion's League. Yet they couldn't get past Manchester United, but I digress. Indo sort of played like the Spurs minus the headers. Azkals should need a lot of training in passing, and they relied on long shots and prayers that the ball wouldn't land at the opposing player. The lucky goal was scored by an Uruguayan named Christian Gonzales. Etheridge probably did not trust his defender to block the kick or he knew the ball's possible trajectory on his left wing is dangerous so he did the right thing except he missed.

Sad, but Etheridge was careful ever since. But we had lots of opportunities. I was shocked one time that Younghusband was tripped within the penalty box yet the referee did not call for a penalty kick. And Indos kept on faking injuries to the point of being carried by stretcher to waste time. Dirty tricks indeed considering they have more professional players than ours (pro and semi-pro from the Air Force). And sports analysts said that the Azkals played too clean.

After the game, I expected a huge disappearance in fansites. But I was mistaken!  Fans remained optimistic as ever. They expressed support for the team and were expecting a victory on the second leg!  I hope so!


Thursday, December 9, 2010

Football Madness is Here!

Wow, Last Saturday I was stunned to learn that Philippines has defeated defending champions Vietnam 2-0 at the 2010 Suzuki AFF Cup. Even our NT Coach Simon McMenemy was shocked at the outcome. We got an unexpected tie with Singapore last Wednesday so nobody was expecting a lot. The outcome was so amazing I made a song out of it. We drew against Myanmar and we'll be facing Indonesia on the 16th which falls on...Friday next week! Historically, we've never defeated Indonesia in any match before. Just a tie sometime in...1977?  Worse, AFF decided that our opponent shall host two semi-final matches against us in a crowd of 80,000+! Reinstated president of the PFF President Mari Martinez allegedly insisted that our stadium does not pass FIFA standards and even blocked inspection from the Association itself. 

Broadsheets were now focused on Azkals, songs were sung, a party at Hotel H20 were held in their honor. But the odds are against the Azkals, can they prevail?  Suppose they get past Indonesia, they will be battling whoever wins in the Malaysia-Vietnam match (most likely Vietnam will win) in the finals. If they have to face Vietnam once again, they have to do much much more to win! 

Philippine football is in a precarious position. Our team needs a huge huge ounce of mental and physical toughness to win. Fate is in their hands...and feet.

I have a crazy prediction. If the Philippines win the Cup, it would usher in a new brand of unity and nationalism that we've never experienced before. Team Sports is far more overwhelming in victory than a counterpart in individual Sports like Boxing. We celebrate in honor of Pacquiao whenever he wins in a match, but we celebrate in honor of Azkals in victory, not only Greatwich, not only Younghusband, not only Etheridge! Pinoys would realize that we can truly achieve something as a team despite all odds. That we can finally have a place in the international stage. As we all know, there are more countries in FIFA than in the United Nations. We laud Filipino individual achievements, good. But there is a magic in football that brings people together. Unlike England and most countries in Europe, our national team is far more prominent than our clubs and I encourage that idea because in this setup Pinoys would be able to celebrate together rather than subdivide themselves again and again until there is none to divide with.  

The moneymaking potential here cannot be ignored. Football is so vast, so immense that it requires huge manpower and capital. When Pinoys clamor for better facilities, better rankings, better performance, private and public sectors could take advantage by hiring more workers and specialists, more promotions for commercial advantage, and therefore more potential in steady cashflows and profit. 

A victory in the Suzuki Cup would come in two-edged sword -- it could inspire us to strive for the better; or, lead us once again in apathy. For the latter, I don't think so. We have far more worlds to conquer. There is the Asian Federation Challenge Cup where we would face Middle Eastern Countries and perhaps even South Korea and Japan! Oh, Coach McMenemy has also been eyeing on the 2014 World Cup.  THAT is the bigger prize.  We must qualify!  We must! 

Let's keep the dream alive!

Ezekial choke w/ gi from mount

1. Grab a collar.
2. Slip free hand under op's head.
3. With that free hand, grab a fabric somewhere above the elbow from the collar-holding hand.
4. Squeeze downward.
5. Drag the head to the side by moving the elbow from the collar-holding hand to a 12-o' clock position.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

What is so Hard at Being Single?

Being happy with yourself is not easy when you're almost thirty yet still don't have a relationship since birth.  You feel a pang when you see your classmates and friends marrying off the girl of their dreams.  You feel jealous when the crush you chatted for weeks suddenly refused to talk to you only to find out that she already had a boyfriend.

Life is not fair, but the worst thing you could ever do is to be unfair to yourself. To bitterly curse your loneliness is normal. But in doing so, you forget that you are NOT lonely at all! Otherwise, how do you train in Jiu-jitsu all by yourself?  Certainly you have your team mates rolling with you, friends to go out with, and you still have your family with you. You are only missing one person in your life, not a team, not a brotherhood, not your family.  You are not lonely. 

I'm not saying that you should not find a woman. But never ever think that you will be truly happy only when you get a girlfriend and a wife. Having a relationship will always have tumultuous moments which even extend up to marriage. Mr. W a brown-belt I've befriended in Facebook, said that in marriage a man would get less and less sex over time. And funny, men would STILL go out with their buddies for a good time after they get married.  You can be happy just the way you are. 

I think when a person is truly happy with himself, he'd be able to make sound and intelligent decisions in choosing a woman. And vice-versa.  You'd have no qualms dumping a gold digger no matter how pretty she is, nor will you concede to her emotional blackmail.  You master your emotions, not being a slave to it.           In my theology class, our lecturer delivered the best advice on marriage: "You marry not because you can't live without her; You CAN live without her, yet you CHOSE to be with her.  That is True Love."

Monday, December 6, 2010

Strange Choke

1. At sidemount, grab the end of your gi (nearest to the op) and and feed it under your op's head. Make sure he is flat and his arm is immobilized ( that is, it's not tucked enough for him to turn to his side)
2. At a flick of your elbows, your forearm should push his neck down. Make sure you're not hitting the chin.
3. With your free arm, reach under to grab the bicep of his immobilized arm. 
4. Sprawl.

Second variation:

Gosh I forgot! Will check it out again by Wednesday.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Strange Spider Guard sweep

1.  If a conventional sweep does not work, your op would lift his left leg for balance.
2.  Use your sweeping leg to lift that leg.
3.  At the same time, feed his left arm underneath him.
4.  Turn perpendicular to his body.
5.  Lift his leg.
6.  Roll to achieve the sweep.