Saturday, March 09, 2013

Fair Play: Integrity issues in BPO football, running

WAY before anybody has heard of the Azkals, I pushed for support for inter-BPO football competitions from the Cebu Football Association (CFA). Back then, there were inter-BPO tournaments that barely survived and I thought support from the CFA would be a boost to these tournaments.

My rationale was simple, if you want to make football grow, supporting BPO competitions is one sure way. This is a competition for players who work in companies whose idea of sports leagues is limited to basketball. They bring their friends, sons, and co-workers to the tournaments. And the people who ran these leagues were those who love football enough that they’d actually find time away from work to organize, train for and join teams.

I thought these guys deserve a pat in the back.

I still think the same. And fast forward to 2013, we have an inter-company division in the Aboitiz Cup and in most football festivals. But what we don’t have is an inter-company division and players are from these companies are asking, “What is an inter-company division?”

Teams from Sykes, Accenture or Convergys are sure “inter-company” teams, but what about the rest?

I had a chat with Tanya Chica of Convergys and Fabian Echevarria of Stream and it seems this is also the same question most of the BPO teams want answered. And things aren’t that easy because it seems companies—or even a group of friends—who want to put up a football team can just get together a group of players, even if they are not their workers, and field them in the division.

And that basically defeats the purpose of the division, right?

It’s not that these teams want to rule out other teams by raising eligibility concerns. It’s just that they want to know what they are in for. They want to have the rules clarified.

I was told concerns about eligibility rules were raised in the Aboitiz Cup and CIS Cup but apparently this hasn’t been resolved and the perfect time to resolve this, I think, is when the CFA meets for its general assembly on March 17.

And I think before they tackle the eligibility rules, those concerned must first answer this question—what’s the purpose of putting up an inter-company division?

It was supposed to get the employees involved, so in the future, you’d get the companies to support their teams. Just like what the E-League has done for inter-company basketball.

But if the inter-company division becomes an extension of the men’s open, why bother put up one?

SM2SM RUN. I also got an e-mail from a concerned runner, who wants to remain anonymous, about the SM2M run.

While praising the conduct of the run, and the surprises for the runners, “the cash prizes, free round-trip tickets and hotel stays combined I believe, to form the richest awards in Cebu’s fun run history…Hey, there were more prizes! Secretly strapped under the chairs in the awarding ceremony were more gift certificates and (did I hear right?) a GC for P10,000,” he pointed out a glitch in the run. The timing results.

He wrote, “I just find it surprising and amusing how 279 (which I bothered to count, 21k male category) male runners got a 5:00:00 start time. I checked that in the 2013 Cebu Marathon only 20 (out of 450, 21k male) and the 2012 Globe R4H only 12 (out of 779, 21k male) had “perfect” starts of 5:00:00. Certainly, 279 runners cannot be packed across the starting line at any given moment. I am pointing out this glitch not to offend anyone but just to appeal for more accurate timing in future runs.”

Well, most runners want accurate results so they could gauge their progress and I hope this concern will be addressed.

No comments: