MABALACAT, PAMPANGA — For the first time in 22 years, the Lupang Hinirang was not played during the awarding ceremony of the Southeast Asian Games’ men’s softball tournament.
The RP Blu Boys suffered a harsh 1-6 beating at the hands of Singapore in the finals, Sunday at the Villages.
The last time the Philippines lost in a SEA Games tournament was back in 1997. Then, they suffered a defeat to host Indonesia in the gold medal match.
This time, the Singaporeans served as bane to the Philippines.
In their first two encounters this year, Singapore took down the Philippines with identical 4-3 scorelines in both the World Softball Championship last July and the elimination round of this tournament last Friday. THis time, though, the visitors had a strong start.
In the third inning, Rey Aliling and the Philippines could not get their last out as Singaporeans had a three-run, two-out rally.
Two more runs in the next inning gave the host a tough mountain to climb. And with Aloysius Ong untouchable on the mound, the run never came.
This is Singapore’s first gold in the sport.