A total of 27 personalities and entities most of them in combat sports, will be the recipients of citations in next week’s SMC-PSA (Philippine Sportswriters Association) Annual Awards Night at the Manila Hotel.
ONE Championship titleholders Eduard Folayang, Kevin Belingon, Geje Eustaquio, Joshua Pacio, and Brandon Vera lead the list of those to be cited for their respective feats by the country’s sportswriting fraternity during the event presented by MILO, Cignal TV, and the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC).
Others from the world of combat sports include reigning World Boxing Organization (WBO) mini-flyweight champion Vic Saludar, long-time pal and now Manny Pacquiao trainer Restituto ‘Buboy’ Fernandez, International Boxing Organization (IBO) bantamweight champion Michael Dasmariñas, amateur fighter Criztian Pitt Laurente, and judoka Kiyomi Watanabe.
Unfortunately, Saludar won’t be personally around during the two-hour affair also backed by Chooks To Go, Rain or Shine, Tapa King, NorthPort, SM Prime Holdings, ICTSI, Mighty Sports, and the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) as he will be making his first title defense on the same day against Masataka Taniguchi in Tokyo, Japan.
The popular sport of basketball won’t be left behind either as Bobby Ray Parks, Alab Pilipinas, San Beda Red Lions, and national team stalwart Janine Pontejos are also going to be handed out with citation by the oldest media organization in the country.
Not to be left out is the sport of chess which has for awardees the Philippine junior team, upcoming John Marvin Miciano, and International Master Chito Garma.
Completing the list are the trio of golfers in Angelo Que, Miguel Tabuena, and Dottie Ardina, cyclist Ronald Oranza, fencer Maxine Esteban, Centennial III of sailing, Kenneth San Andres in motocross, the Philippine men’s football team, Mighty Sports, and former long-time Philippine Tennis Association (Philta) president Salvador ‘Buddy’ Andrada.
On top of the 2018 honorees are weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz, skateboarder Margielyn Didal, and golfers Yuka Saso, Bianca Pagdanganan, and Lois Kaye Go will be awarded with the coveted Athlete of the Year honor.
There will be a total of 75 awardees in all, with bemedalled and Olympian Bea Lucero-Lhuillier invited as the special guest speaker.