Quantcast
Latest Stories

Yao Ming, Binay dribble around sea dispute

By

MISMATCH Neck strained and mouth agape in mock awe, Vice President Jejomar Binay looks skyward in a futile effort to see eye to eye with the visiting Chinese basketball star Yao Ming. AUGUST DE LA CRUZ

He may be no Black Mamba like Kobe Bryant, but Vice President Jejomar Binay unabashedly dribbled around Yao Ming, as if challenging the 7’6” former Houston Rockets center to a one-on-one.

A shocked Binay welcomed Yao and his Shanghai Sharks to his Coconut Palace Monday morning, gaping at the giant and looking up to shake hands with the retired NBA player.

The 5-foot vice president stood just up to Yao’s elbow and quipped to photographers he needed a ladder to face the towering Chinese.

“I’ve seen someone who’s eight feet tall, but Yao is different. He is truly terrifying,” Binay later told reporters.

Yao and the Sharks, assisted by Chinese Ambassador to the Philippines Ma Keqing and officials of the Philippine Sports Commission, paid a courtesy call on Binay and invited him to watch their match in the evening against Smart Gilas Pilipinas.

“I think I will stop campaigning just to watch this game. Politics is also a popular sport here in the Philippines,” Binay told Yao.

Taking a break at the homestretch of the campaign for next week’s elections, a helicopter ferried Binay from Camarines Sur to meet Yao.

“The visit of Mr. Yao Ming is part of the continuing cultural exchange between the Philippines and China. We hope we can have more of this cultural exchange,” Binay said at the conference room.

Yao thanked Binay for the warm welcome he and his team received in the past few days and hoped basketball could lead to closer ties between Manila and Beijing.

“Basketball is a very popular sport here in the Philippines. In the last 20 to 30 years, basketball has gained very much popularity in China too. Everybody watches this game and we hope to further exchange our friendly relations through this game,” Yao said through an interpreter.

He then presented Binay with a Sharks jersey and a basketball signed by the team members. Binay bounced the ball a few times, à la Kobe Bryant, teasing Yao.

Sports diplomacy

Philippine Sports Commission chairman Ricardo Garcia said the Sharks’ visit was part of sports diplomacy between the two countries.

“This is the result of our bilateral agreement for us to share expertise, our athletes in training. This is just the beginning of many more teams visiting the Philippines. We’re talking of the football team, volleyball team,” Garcia said.

“It is our belief that through sports, we can be one, China and the Philippines, and maybe we should forget some of our political problems,” said Garcia in apparent reference to the maritime dispute between Manila and Beijing over the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea).

“You know this year is the year of friendly exchanges between our two countries,” the Chinese ambassador told reporters. “This is one showcase of the exchanges between our two peoples.” She made no reference to the maritime dispute.

Binay said he talked briefly with Ma about the dispute. “I told her that China should avoid actions that provoked tensions in the area… that [Chinese] vessels should not enter where these should not,” he said.

“I told her that if we could resolve those issues [through dialogue], then arbitration would no longer be necessary,” Binay said.

He said Ma reiterated China’s rejection of the Philippines arbitration bid in the United Nations, a legal action that Manila initiated in January to clarify its maritime entitlement.


Follow Us


Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: courtesy call , cultural exchange , Global Nation , Jejomar Binay , Yao Ming

  • mamer2

    Did Yao Ming make a courtesy call on P’noy..?
    If “NO”…., then “WHY NOT.?”

    Something smells.

    • alex ca

      si Bina ang nagtawag ng Intsik na yan di si Pinoy…..Para maging presidente sa susunod…

  • MostHatedRace

    kaya di dapat pinagkakatiwalaan si Binay. Magnanakaw lang ito at ibebenta sa mga magnanakaw ng Intsik. Wag iboto ang mga Binay.

  • alex ca

    taga saan kaya sa China si Binay? Dapat umuwi na siya doon wag yong maghakot siya ng kababayan niya dito sa ating bansang Pilipinas………

  • farmerpo

    It is not even a humbling experience for Binay. ‘Politics is also a sport here in the Philippines’, true but smacks of arrogance,coming from the VP.



Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
Advertisement

News

  • If Napoles names Aquino allies, they’ll be brought to bar of justice – Palace
  • Lacson says diamond-studded earring snatched from wife fake
  • Pope John XXIII launched Vatican II and then some
  • Militants: Napoles as state witness is ‘clear travesty of justice’
  • US ‘closely watching’ for signs of N.Korea nuclear test
  • Sports

  • Wizards beat Bulls in OT to take 2-0 series lead
  • Pacers rally past Hawks 101-85 to even series
  • David Moyes out as Manchester United manager
  • Nadal to face fellow Spaniard at Barcelona Open
  • Defensive Chelsea holds Atletico in scoreless draw
  • Lifestyle

  • Wanted: Beauty queen with a heart that beats for the environment
  • Kim Atienza: At home with art and design
  • Life lessons I want to teach my son
  • Sweet party for Andi Manzano
  • Safety in online buying and selling
  • Entertainment

  • Ex-Fox exec denies allegations in sex abuse suit
  • Kris Aquino backtracks, says Herbert Bautista and her are ‘best friends’
  • Summer preview: Chris Pratt enters a new ‘Galaxy’
  • Bon Jovi helps open low-income housing in US
  • Summer movie preview: Bay reboots ‘Transformers’
  • Business

  • McDonald’s 1Q profit slips as US sales decline
  • SEC approves SM’s P15B retail bond offer
  • $103M Vista Land bonds tendered for redemption
  • Oil slips to $102 as US crude supplies seen rising
  • SC stops Meralco power rate hike anew
  • Technology

  • Engineers create a world of difference
  • Bam Aquino becomes Master Splinter’s son after Wiki hack
  • Mark Caguioa lambasts Ginebra teammates on Twitter
  • Brazil passes trailblazing Internet privacy law
  • New York police Twitter campaign backfires badly
  • Opinion

  • One-dimensional diplomacy: A cost-benefit analysis of Manila’s security deal with Washington
  • No ordinary illness
  • Reforest mountains with fire trees and their kind
  • Day of the Earth
  • When will Chinese firm deliver new coaches?
  • Global Nation

  • Filipina, 51, shot dead by 24-year-old American boyfriend
  • China, rivals sign pact to ease maritime tensions
  • Visa-free US trip? Do not believe it, says consulate
  • Obama visit to Asia seen as counterweight to China
  • Violence mars militant protest at US Embassy
  • Marketplace