Hoy! Pinoy sila!

The success of the Malditas–Filipinas for the other group–has again raised that old ugly argument, that they are not pure Filipinos and that we couldn’t be proud of them.

Which is kinda ironic and a little bit sad, considering how the Philippines and Filipinos strong social media presence has led to this foul practice that is Filipino-baiting. What is it? Well, it’s basically content creators seeking a Filipino angle–any angle, even fleeting–so they could tap the vast presence that is the Pinoys in social media–cue in videos with “Foreigners react to Jollibee,” “Foreigners speak perfect Tagalog,” or “Foreigners try balut,” videos.

WE ARE ALL MALDITAS. The players are a picture of ecstasy after Sarina Bolden’s kick seals the team’s entry to the Fifa World Cup; these celebrations were mirrored in the country and all over the world where Pinoys tuned in to watch that match.

Let’s face it, some of our kababayans fall for it and they find that cute.

And now you have this, a team of Pinoys being questioned because for some, they are not Pinoys enough. Why, you want them to post videos of themselves eating balut? Does that make them Pinoys enough for you? (I can”t make that video because I don’t eat balut, not even if it means a date with Maria Sharapova).

As I pointed out in another post, this team is the product of the Filipino diaspora; they are the daughters or the daughters of the sons and daughters of our OFWs. And if Hollywood, or specifically Marvel, can appreciate that by having a lola order spider-man to clean cobwebs in that iconic scene in No Way Home when Peter Parker’s best friends met the other Peter Parkers, we should also appreciate the positive things the Diaspora has given our country and not raise the Pure Blood nonsense every time the Azkals or Malditas play. Besides, have you not heard of Harry Potter?

It’s not the name. It’s the attitude behind the name, that’s what people don’t understand.

Ernie Nierras, the father of Malditas, speaking to GMA 7 regarding the debate on the nickname.

Besides, the Malditas success will good for girls football in the country in the long run as it will get more girls to play. Just take this light mental exercise; how many girls in your family, or extended family, play football? Or how about this, how many young girls do you know are athletic? And of that number, how many are into basketball, volleyball or football?

It’s simply not enough and I am hoping the Malditas success will get more young girls into sports, not just football.

This team certainly has us believing that anything is possible. South Korea’s next for us at 4 p.m. on Feb. 3. Previous results are no longer a factor, our win against Chinese Taipei showed us that. Before that historic game, we lost twice to Chinese Taipei, 5-0 and 4-2 in the 2020 Olympic qualifiers.

Last time the Malditas faced Korea? They lost 5-0 in the qualifier for the 2019 Women’s World Cup. Somehow, I consider that a good omen.

PROUND PINAYS. A 2018 interview with Ryley Bugay and Sarina Bolden when they were trying out for the 2018 squad posted by Tano Records on Youtube.
Mike T. Limpag
Mike T. Limpag

Mike T. Limpag has covered the Cebu sports scene for over 20 years, starting as an 18-year-old cub reporter for the Freeman in 1997 before moving to SunStar Cebu in 2001.

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