Sunday, December 7, 2008

PREPARING TO WIN

Its Pacquiao by TKO

The entire Filipino nation must have watched this much-awaited, grand boxing event of the year. It was a match where Manny Pacquiao was the definite underdog against a much bigger, taller, and more experienced boxer, the celebrated Golden boy of boxing - Oscar DelaHoya. The betting odds were decidedly against Manny. Most boxing experts predicted a gross mismatch in favor of DelaHoya. They were in for a great shock. After the first two rounds which Manny Pacquiao clearly dominated, it was apparent that the Manny Pacquiao that DelaHoya now faced was an entirely different boxer from what he expected. Manny expertly bobbed and weaved, displayed elegant footwork, and unleashed crisp, jarring combinations. The eighth round saw Manny punching at will the hapless and badly bruised DelaHoya. By the end of the eighth, the outcome was evident. DelaHoya failed to answer the bell for the ninth round. Manny had won by TKO.

Manny deserved to win. When DelaHoya was interviewed after the match, he never offered any excuses except to say that he had lost to a great fighter. I noticed it was a vastly different Pacquiao. This time he moved gracefully with deft footwork, weaving in and out, left to right, and throwing combinations with blinding speed. It was understandable if DelaHoya's gameplan was upset. Manny had prepared very well. It was Manny's gameplan that worked, and it was obvious that he trained and prepared very hard for this defining moment. DelaHoya said he trained and prepared very hard too. I believe him and he is an awesome fighter, though I believed it was Manny who trained and prepared hard correctly. That spelled the big difference.

I can't help but make the connection to today's Gospel. John the Baptist was called to prepare the way for the Lord. The call for for the Lord's coming takes a lifetime of preparation. It is an on-going process of conversion to the way of Life by following Jesus. If Pacquiao had Roach as an excellent trainer, we have the Catholic Church that Jesus himself instituted to train and guide us to the one true path of salvation. The Church guides us to the correct way of preparation, where we can not lose if we choose to prepare to win.

By the way, Manny Pacquiao is a staunch ProLife advocate. During Humanae Vitae's 40th anniversary at the UST grounds, he exclaimed on the stage: "Kung nag-contracept ang mga magulang ko, wala nang Manny Pacquiao ngayon !" (If my parents used contraceptives, there won't be any Manny Pacquiao now !)

Mabuhay ka Manny Pacquiao!

2 comments:

R.O. said...

Were you a sportswriter in a 'former life'? :) Crisp description. Thanks!

WillyJ said...

r.o.,
You missed the excitement. Try looking for the payback Round 8 on Youtube. Thanks for the visit!