Filipinos cheering for medal-less Timor-Leste to score SEA Games win

(L) At the opening ceremony of the SEA Games <I>Photo: ABS-CBN News </I> (R) Flag of Timor Leste <I>Photo: Isabel Nolasco / Wikimedia commons</I>
(L) At the opening ceremony of the SEA Games Photo: ABS-CBN News (R) Flag of Timor Leste Photo: Isabel Nolasco / Wikimedia commons

Never let it be said that Filipinos aren’t a friendly and hospitable bunch — even when it comes to people we’re theoretically competing against.

That good old Filipino hospitality was on full display after an outpouring of love and support for Team Timor-Leste trended on Twitter yesterday, with Filipino netizens cheering on the tiny country’s athletes, who have yet to win a medal.

Read: On the Map: Filmmaker responds to Inday rant with geographical alternative to SEA Games entrance music

The SEA Games’ official Twitter account even got in on the lovefest, posting an official tally of medals last night showing the Philippines in the lead with a whopping 95 medals to its name (yay!), Vietnam in second with 75 medals, and Malaysia in third with 37.

At the bottom of the rankings was little ol’ Timor-Leste, with zero medals, but a whopping “102 MILLION HEARTS OF FILIPINO[s],” as the SEA Games tweet cheekily noted.

A pinned tweet that appeared earlier in the day on the games’ official account said, “Go! Fight! Win! #TimorLeste bring some medals for your country! #Philippines are here to support you!”

Read: Two Golds: Malacañang congratulates female boxer, teen gymnast for historic wins

A quick run-through of the trending hashtag #TimorLeste shows thousands of Filipino netizens offering moral support, and rooting for the republic’s no doubt hardworking athletes.

OK. Now that all that gracious good sportsmanship stuff is out of the way, on to gloating about the Philippines’ medal haul.

As of today, we’re sitting pretty with 47 golds, 31 silvers, and 17 bronzes, easily outdoing our performance at the 2017 SEA Games, where we took home a total of 24 gold medals. (Vietnam currently has the second-most golds, with 23.)

This year’s notable winners include world champion gymnast Carlos Yulo, arnis athletes Crisamuel Delfin and Mary Allin Aldeguer, and Olympic weightlifter Hidylin Diaz.

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