INCHEON, Korea—Golfer Mia Legaspi professes to her adulation for K-Pop stars.
She, in fact, admitted popping up 11 grand to watch one of her favorite Korean bands recently in Manila. She also and rues missing Friday’s opening ceremonies when K-Pop artists opened for international star Psy to highlight the party atmosphere that set on fire all actions in the 17th Asian Games here.
“Sayang, I missed the opening ceremonies! I would have loved to see them perform,” Legaspi said as the Philippine golf team touched base with the Asiad secretariat Monday night after their relatively short flight from Manila.
But that is where Mia’s definition of being star-struck ends.
On Mia’s shoulders will rest the Philippines’ campaign in women’s golf on Friday, but the 15-year old lass and her teammates are not showing any signs of pressure.
“K-Pop rocks,” she said with a girlish giggle in the presence of teammates Pauline del Rosario and Princess Superal, “but our focus is on this event.”
The golfing girls are raring for action as they attempt to win the gold medal for the Philippines.
“Mia is our bet for an individual gold medal, and the team is also a gold medal contender,” said Chief of Mission Ritchie Garcia, also the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) chairman.
Garcia has reasons to put his bet on the girls.
They finished third behind teams from Korea and Japan among Asian countries in the recent World Amateur Team Championships in Japan. Australia won the tournament.
They are also the runners-up to the same Korean team in the Asia Pacific Championships.
“The girls—all of them still young– are now familiar with the opposition. It is a positive factor for them because they would no longer be star-struck when they face-off,” Garcia said.
The girls, in fact, did not waste time in logging more training hours even after the Philippines was battered by typhoon Mario last week.
“We played even the day before we left Manila,” Mia said.
Along with the four is the men’s team of Rupert Saragoza, Raymart Tolentino, Justin Raphael Quiban and Kristoffer Arevalo.