This year’s Southeast Asian (SEA) Games features some of the best Filipino athletes—from triathletes to basketball players to gymnasts, there is no doubt that Filipinos are really talented. But have you heard of our water polo team?
The team notched a silver medal after beating Malaysia, 14-11, last Sunday at the New Clark City Aquatics Center. The last time the team won the silver was in the 2005 SEA Games.
Some Filipino fans have their eyes on this edition’s roster, calling them some of the “hottest athletes.” The team consists of Roy Canete, Tani Gomez Matthew Yu, Mico Anota, Macgyver Reyes, Adan Gonzales, Paolo Serrano, Abnel Amiladjid, Aljon Salonga, Mark Valdez, Romark Bello, Mummar Alamara, Frazier Alamara, Ricardo Dilap, and Gabor Egedi.
Despite the fact that the team didn’t win gold, people were still rooting for them.
Originally called “football-in-the-water,” the underrated sport follows rules that are similar to those of basketball: consisting of two teams, with each one attempting to score a goal by throwing the ball into their opponent’s goal.
The Philippine’s men’s national water polo team won 4th place in the 2017 SEA Games and 5th last 2015. They also won four bronze medals since 1991. When the country hosted the SEA Games in 2005, the team came very close to bagging the gold. “We are motivated by that loss,” said head coach Dale Evangelista.