The Philippines’ failed bid to host the 2019 Fiba World Cup drew mixed reactions from the Filipinos, who, admittedly are basketball-crazy.
Sports5 head Chot Reyes tweeted a one-word response, moments after China was declared the winner:
Thousands of people more poured their sentiments at Twitter, forming a unified voice on the popular micro-blogging site that made #PUSO2019 the trending topic worldwide.
While winning the bid to host the world championships would have send Pinoys at Twitter crazy, I believe the failure to corner the rights for the Fiba World Cup offer numerous valuable take-aways.
1. The Fiba World Cup bidding for 2019 again showcased the ability of Filipinos to form a united front. Hopefully, we could show this same unity everyday in continually making a positive contribution to the country’s economic, political, social and moral growth.
2. The bid showed that Filipinos are not afraid of challenges. China, which, in just over a decade, has proven to the world that it can successfully host big events like the Olympics in 2008 (Beijing), the Asian Games in 2010 (Guangzhou), the World Universiade in Shenzen (2011), the Fiba Asia men’s championships, (2001, 2003, 2009, 2011 and on Sept. 2015), among others.
We may not have the enormous resources China has at its disposal, but at least, the SBP under Pangilinan, showed to all that big, fighting heart (PUSO), in battling the ‘Great Wall’ till the end.
3. The bid also showed the reality that the Philippines still has a lot of rooms to improve as far as infrastructure and transportation are concerned.
Clearly, China had the upperhand in the bid because it has the massive venues, the hotels, international airports and the high-speed trains to ensure the success of the Fiba World Cup.
At the end of the day, the SBP and even the national government can learn so much from the bid process.
And for the rest of us, life does not end there because Filipinos will continue to dream, believe and fight for global recognition, regardless of the odds.