In the heart of Singapore, amidst the towering skyscrapers and bustling streets, a remarkable story of Filipino pride unfolds. At just 18 years old, Zach Sales Ramin has emerged as a bowling champion, proudly representing the Philippines on the global stage. This is not just a tale of sports; it's a story of cultural identity, perseverance, and unwavering pride that resonates with Filipinos around the world.
Early Beginnings: Bowling in the Filipino Diaspora
Zach Sales Ramin's journey in the world of bowling began at the tender age of 9, playing in Filipino Bowling Clubs in Singapore. The sport was introduced to him by his parents, Rudi and Grace, both avid bowlers themselves. These formative years, spent playing alongside other Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs), not only honed Zach's bowling skills but also fostered a deep connection with his Filipino roots.
Fay Lugue, President of the Filipino Bowlers Club of Singapore, reminisces, "From the very beginning, Zach stood out, even against seasoned adults in our leagues. There was a spark in him, a natural affinity for the game that was unmistakable."
Training Excellence: From Singapore to the Global Stage
Recognizing Zach's passion, his parents enrolled him in Strike Academy, one of Singapore's premier bowling academies. Under the guidance of Kim Eun Jung, a former Korean national bowler, Zach not only mastered the fundamentals but also acquired advanced techniques and a competitive edge.
Biboy Rivera, former coach of the Philippine team, noticed Zach's potential early on and recruited him to join the national youth development squad. This marked the beginning of Zach's journey to international competitions and acclaim.
Historic Victory at the Singapore Open
In June 2023, the Singapore International Open Bowling Championship became the stage for Zach's historic breakthrough. Competing against some of the world's top bowlers, Zach, at just 17, became the youngest-ever winner and the first Filipino male to clinch the title since 1965.
Under the guidance of Coach Joe Slowinski, Zach's victory was not just a testament to his skill but also to his coachability and focus. Reflecting on the tournament, Coach Slowinski emphasized the importance of a communication protocol that kept Zach focused on the process, leading to a historic win.
Team Triumph at the Asian Youth Bowling Championship
Following his Singapore Open triumph, Zach joined the Philippine team for the Asian Youth Bowling Championship in Bangkok, Thailand. Despite being the youngest member, Zach played a crucial role in fostering team camaraderie and spirit, contributing to their astonishing comeback victory.
Under the guidance of coaches Joe Slowinski and Jojo Canare, the Philippine team achieved a historic win, placing them in the spotlight of Philippine senators who commended the boys for their achievement.
Integration into the Philippine Team: Surmounting Distance
Zach's victories propelled him onto the international stage as a representative of the Philippines. Despite the geographical distance, his dedication and talent harmoniously connected him with his Philippine-based teammates. Zach's story exemplifies how passion and skill in sports can transcend geographical barriers, fostering unity and excellence in global sporting achievements.
Ambitious Goals for 2024
As Zach looks ahead to 2024, exciting opportunities and challenges await. Securing a spot in the Philippine National Training Pool, he aims to defend his Singapore Open title, represent the Philippines in various international competitions, and balance his athletic aspirations with academic commitments.
Looking back on his journey, Zach Sales Ramin shared, "Representing the Philippines is more than just playing the sport I love; it's about carrying the hopes and dreams of a nation." As he continues to inspire a new generation to pursue their dreams, Zach's story stands as a testament to the strength and spirit of Filipinos worldwide.
Zach Sales Ramin's journey is not just about bowling; it's a narrative of triumph over distance, a celebration of cultural identity, and a source of inspiration for Filipinos globally. As he steps onto the lanes, Zach carries with him the strength and spirit of every Filipino, leaving an indelible mark on the world of bowling and beyond.