Palarong Pambansa formally opens-A A +A
Monday, May 5, 2014
STA. CRUZ, Laguna - The weeklong 2014 Palarong Pambansa formally opened here yesterday morning with some 11,200 delegates of athletes, coaches and officials gathered at the sprawling 19-hectare Laguna Sports Complex here.
Laguna Gov. Joerge E.R. Ejercito Estregan, who welcomed participants, said the sportsfest for elementary and secondary athletes is expected to produce future champions like chess grand master Mark Paragua, Azkals football player Chieffy Caligdong, decorated trackster Elma Muros and Willy Miller, among others.
"Matitiyak ako na meron madagdag na magigiting mga atleta na ipamaglaki ng Pilipinas," Estregan said during his opening speech.
Former Philippine president and Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada, for his part, urged athletes to never surrender when they lose as they must rise up again and grab their respective dreams.
Estrada said, ""Kung kaya natin tanggapin ito makukuha natin ang tagumpay, Failure is invetable but giving up is unforgivable."
Winter Olympian figure skater Michael Martinez, basketball brothers Jerry and Jeric Teng, La Salle track team captain Jericho Estrada and actor swimmer Enchong Dee led the traditional lighting of the urn that was greeted by fireworks.
Boxing icon and Sarangani Cong. Manny Pacquiao didn't make it to the opening rites as sources said he was caught in the traffic. Two-time PBA most valuable player James Yap, for his part, was also a no-show as he had to attend an emergency.
Some games resumed in the afternoon while the rest of the events will go full blast in 16 venues in the province.
The National Capital Region is over-all defending champion of the Games.
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on May 06, 2014.