Manila Standard sports and technology editor Riera U. Mallari and his band Johnny Cross hope to boost the morale of the Filipino athletes with a rendition of their song “Pilipinas” at the TeamPhilippines’ Send-off Ng Bayan on Wednesday at the Ninoy Aquino Stadium in Manila.
Pilipinas, written by Mallari with music from Roman Prospero of the Daily Tribune, is the official song of the Philippine squad in the 30th Southeast Asian Games.
The song was launched last week and was posted on the official Facebook account of Team Philippines for the 2019 SEA Games. Its official music video will also be shown today at the Pep Rally for Philippine athletes joining the SEA Games.
Mallari is Johnny Cross frontman, with Prospero on guitars, Yann Evasco on bass, and Kams Olea and Mikee Cabrera on drums.
“Wala kasing official anthem ang mga atletang Pinoy, so we filled that void with our song Pilipinas (Filipino athletes didn’t have an official anthem, so we filled that void with our song Pilipinas),” said Mallari. “We hope it becomes the anthem of all Filipino athletes, not just in the SEA Games, but in the Olympics and Asian Games, and all competitions as well.”
Also performing during the sendoff, which is free to the public, are Bamboo, The Juans, and Silent Sanctuary.
Filipino sports heroes such as Olympic medalists Mansueto “Onyok” Velasco Jr. and Pol Serrantes of boxing, bowling hall of famers Paeng Nepomuceno and Bong Coo, Asia’s first chess grandmaster Eugene Torre, and track and field icons Lydia de Vega-Mercado and Elma Muros-Posadas, will also be at the Pep Rally to inspire the athletes, numbering 1,115 from 56 sports, all of them aiming to collectively reclaim the SEAG overall title for the country.
“Our athletes are the heart and soul of the country’s campaign in the Olympics,” said Team Philippines chef de mission and Philippine Sports Commission Chairman William I. Ramirez.
Ramirez, Philippine Olympic Committee president Abraham Tolentino and House Speaker and Philippine Southeast Asian Games Organizing Committee chairman Alan Peter Cayetano will rally the athletes ahead of the start of the games on Nov. 30.
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