Quezon City—This year, the prestigious World Slasher Cup is paying tribute to a legend of cockfighting.
The premier event is all set with over 200 top fighters from all over the world ready to rumble from until Jan. 26 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum for the WSC 2020 Invitational 9-cock derby: A tribute to Ray Alexander.
Billed as the Olympics of Sabong, WSC pays homage to Alexander, who has become a household name in the sport and earned the admiration of cockfighting enthusiasts all over the world, most especially in the Philippines, which he had been visiting for nearly 50 years.
Alexander passed away July 3, 2019 in Alabama. He was 82.
“I’m very thankful for the kindness, generosity, and respect all of you have shown him through the years,” said Alexander’s daughter Ryandra to guests, participants and members of the media during the event’s press conference at Novotel-Araneta City Saturday.
“Knowing him, he’d rather be here than in heaven,” she added.
Expect a clash of champions as last year’s WSC 2 winners Nene Araneta, Frank Berin, Rey Cañedo, and Jun Durano return to defend their crown against the likes of WSC 1 champion Claude Bautista and Patrick “Idol” Antonio who is looking to score his 8th WSC title this year.
The invitational derby, which will have its Grand Finals on January 26, promises to showcase exciting match-ups of only the best fowl fighters and cockers to ever grace the WSC.
Alexander, who won Cocker of the Year back-to-back at Sunset, Indiana, gained acclaim because of his breeds of Griffin Clarets and Lacey Roundheads. His birds were specifically bred for their speed and cutting power that complimented a “Salto” fighting style of waiting and countering. These bloodlines would eventually be used by top Sabungeros to win championships both locally and the world over.
Having been mentored by Elmer Griffin himself, Alexander paid it forward by helping expand the World Slasher Cup, and the Philippine cock fighting community, by inviting American breeders to compete in the country and sharing his knowledge of chickens with Filipinos. He had nothing but good words to say about Filipino chicken men who he called the “best breeders today”.
Despite the demand for his birds Alexander was not a commercial breeder who would sell to just about anyone, but rather an astute cocker that only sold personally bred gamebirds to those within his circle. One of which was last year’s World Slasher Cup 2 champion Nene Araneta. The two first met in Phoenix in the 1970s and would go on to win many championships together including the WSC in the early ‘70s, a solo win in May 1994, then a three-way tie in January 1995 for an entry fielded with Buddy Mann.