Sunday Morning Thoughts (2 October 2011)

During last Sunday’s training session in Moro, I chanced upon a professional basketball team working out. I couldn’t help but look at the millionaires with certain tinge of envy.

In the hierarchy of Philippine sports, the cagers are at the very top. Basketball players get paid a maximum of Php 420,000.00 while the rookies earn a maximum of Php Php 180,000.00 – excluding won-game bonuses. For this part-time sprint hurdler with a full-time day job, such amounts are staggering. Being corporate-sponsored teams, the players get top-of-the-line coaching and strength & conditioning to say the least. The fact that they get to play the sport they love for hard cash seems like a pretty good deal, albeit with the caveat of relatively short career spans.

The opportunity to take part as a professional athlete is an interesting, if not utterly impossible prospect. It’s nothing but a pipe dream, since I’m nearing twenty-six years old. There are no corporate athletics teams in the Philippines. I only have a few years left before my body succumbs to aging. Reality bites. I honestly don’t see myself competing in the European big leagues in such short a time span.

Irregardless, I won’t hang up my spikes any time soon. Despite being an amateur in every sense of the word, I’ll continue to soldier on. The most unexpected things happen in the realm of sports. Who knows? Maybe one day I can live the dream, should the stars align and the moon shine brightly enough.

Until then, I’ll be doing my utmost best to work within these circumstances – hoping for the best and working to be the best.

“An athlete cannot run with money in his pockets. He must run with hope in his heart and dreams in his head.” – Emil Zatopek

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