Image from sabongtv's facebook account
Cockfighting is considered a sport in the Philippines. It is a bloody game between two matured roosters which is actually being done inside a ring which is called cockpit. The roosters which are being fought inside the cockpit are called gamecocks, they are specially bred kinds of chickens which has been raised and conditioned to attain the proper strength to fight other kinds of roosters.
And just like every sport, these roosters go through series of conditioning, training and good food consumption before they go into the ring for their match. Unfotunately, after the game, most of the time, these cocks would be experiencing physical cuts and wounds or even death. That is why, each gamefowl breeder would be breeding numbers of these kinds of chickens for specific game events. A chicken can only fight one game at a time, being alive at the end of the game wouldn't mean that the cock can be fought with the next game because just like other sports, they tend to get tired, traumatized and may have acquired cuts in their bodies which requires rest and healing.
famous breeder, Art Lopez' White Hatch, image from sabong tv's facebook account
Here's Art Lopez of ARL Gamefarm with his White Hatch, image from Sabong TV's facebook account
The roosters during the fight are also being attached with a sharp, metallic spur which helps them during the fight. This is the main reason why these roosters die during each game.
It has been said that the Spaniards brought this kind of game to the Philippines when the country was colonized by the Spaniards. It was during Magellan's voyage to the country when cockfighting was witnessed and documented by a specific chronicler of Magellan. But based on certain research, cockfighting has been the world's oldest spectator sport which goes back to 6000 years in Persia. There were also evidences of fighting rooster images found in the 6th century BC in Jerusalem. However, at this day, Cockfighting has been banned by certain countries while other countries such as the Philippines, the said sport had increased it's popularity and even had resulted breeders to go into the business of selling their chickens.
Bebot Monsanto of Bebot Gamefarm Cebu holding his Sweater line, image from Sabong TV facebook account
Because of this, the Philippine TV has also brought a specific TV show for the viewers at home. The ABS-CBN Sports and Action produced this Sabong TV and Sagupaan to showcase certain breeders and gamefowl fights live on the television screens. This is in order to broadcast the sport to all the enthusiasts around the country specially to those who are unable to join the games in person. Sabong TV is aired every Saturday from 7am-8am.
Aside from that, the Sabong TV episodes are also being live streamed online and recordings are posted online for the sake of those who are out of the country such as the OFWs and the immigrants who are living in another country.
ARL Greys of Art Lopez
Here's an episode of SABONG TV at World Gamefowl Expo held at World Trade Center last January 24 of this year. This was aired in ABS-CBN Sports and Action.
And here's a sample of an episode where certain breeders are being featured and interviewed plus a farm visit is also being conducted.
While most of the breeders and enthusiasts in gamecocks are males, there are emerging females whom have also gained name in the said sport. Most of them are wives or children of specific known breeders who have influenced these ladies. Here's one of them:
And here's a live airing of her fighting rooster:
Here's another feature of a lady breeder named Alexa Regis:
Sabong TV has also become a medium for specific companies to advertise their gamefowl products such as feeds, vitamins and medicines. Just like this episode which had featured the company named Excellence for their 20th Anniversary.
At this point, cockfighting has been a sport, a hobby and an entertainment in the Philippines. Hundreds if not thousands of big derbies and games are being conducted almost every month. Every Sunday, most enthusiasts gather around specific cockpit arenas to witness and also bid on their bets.
Huge amount of money has been also invested in every rooster in preparation of a certain fight. And even bigger amount is at stake for all the participants. Most big time derbies would give millions of pesos to the ultimate winner of the said game.
More gamecocks photo below:
Mr. Dante Hinlo's DVH Black line
The Greys of 2014 Zamboanga GBA and 2014 NFGB Stag Fighter of the Year, AL LAO of Sweet Diane Gamefarm Zamboanga.
Gold Stag of GRS Gamefarm.
A Roundhead throwback from MD Yuri Gamefarm.
Here's one of my favorite kinds of fighting cocks, Mel Sims Black @ CBGF Gamefarm Dapitan.