I COULD never recall a time when I wished I would become a sportswriter. I loved books and demonstrated some proficiency in writing, but truthfully, I was never much of a sports guy.

That is until I actually started getting into sports. For a long time it was basketball, then gradually I gravitated towards the fight disciplines.

I’m not much of an athlete, mind you. Far from it- as my brother Ramsey seems to have monopolized all the hale, vigorous genomes in my family.

But I do enough to make me understand and appreciate what an athlete goes through, day in and day out.

It is a genuine and capacious interest, one compelled with a desire for knowledge, and a deep and abiding curiosity tempered with respect.

SAC-SMB AWARDS. Today, we will be awarding the best that Cebu sports has to offer during our 32nd Sportswriters Association of Cebu- San Miguel Beer Awards at the Ayala Activity Center.

It has become our annual tradition, and this year we have taken great lengths and pains to choose the deserving athletes. The awardees are being lauded for their accomplishments for the year 2013.

There will be major awards and citations and we will also be naming our Athlete of the Year as well as Sportsman of the Year.

As sportswriters we are mindful of the fact that we are observers, chroniclers of the great deeds that these athletes perform.

But we are proud and feel privileged to be able to narrate and account these feats of strength and skill and I am honored to call myself part of the sports literature fraternity.

Why write about sports? William Hazlitt once wrote: “ When a person dies who does one thing better than anyone else in the world, which so many others are trying to do well, it leaves a gap in society. Why would one not want to write about such people?”

Indeed as I look back, my ambiguous attraction to sports has led me down this path and I wouldn’t want it any other way.

There is so much joy and fulfillment in writing about triumphs and victories, so much inspiration derived from acts of courage and perseverance.

So dear athletes, take a bow. You deserve to be feted today. Congratulations and may your tribe increase.

It is an urban legend that John F. Kennedy used to carry around an anonymous poem in his wallet that goes a little something like this:

“Bullfight critics, ranked in rows

Crowd the enormous plaza full

But only one is there who knows

And he’s the man that fights the bull”

Truly, dear athlete you are the one who knows. Congratulations!

CITIGYM’S CONTENDER SERIES. Once again Citigym, currently Cebu’s only 24 hour gym unveiled its latest installment of “The Contender” boxing series last Saturday, March 22.

For the un-initiated, the participants in the boxing event are its own clientele, namely ordinary guys and gals like you and me, eager to work up a sweat and exchange blows all in the spirit of fun and competition.

Maybe those involved in that “footbrawl” could be better served by showing off their punching skills by joining the next event? Just saying.

Here are the results:

Pierre “The Python” Ong won via UD over Junnel Espinosa.

Yong “The Korean Bulldozer” Hyun won via UD over Gian “Power Drill” Aznar

Michael Arquillano won via UD over Paul Tanggan Paul “Titan” Canta won over Gian “The Giant” Tumalad

On the distaff side, the rematch between Emily “The Black Widow” Wilson and Veronica Reroma ended in a draw while Cylbi “The Roy” Ang won over Catherine “The Lioness” Tabada.

Brian “The Alchemist” Dagohoy defeated Adriel “The Scientist” Palcoto via split decision.

Luigi “Wonder Boy” Gaid took on Kenny “The Destroyer” Demecillo in an exhibition bout.

Great work guys and kudos to Ann Manubag and Julia Siscar of Citigym for a job well done!

LAST ROUND. Is on my ‘89 SHS-B batchmate Dennis Alcarez who recently celebrated his birthday. Cheers!