A 41-year-old Filipino who has been working in Hong Kong as a domestic worker for 10 years hopes eventually to take her passion for baseball back home after becoming the captain of a women’s ball team in the city.
In an exclusive interview published by Apple Daily on Saturday, Cecil Calsas started off with a story like that of many other foreign maids who have made sacrifices to improve the welfare of their families.
Calsas was initially a civil servant in the Philippines. Having learned that she could quadruple her income by becoming a domestic worker in Hong Kong, she made the difficult decision to move to the city to secure a better livelihood to support her two young children.
Once in a foreign place like Hong Kong, there didn’t seem to be much for women to do on their days off apart from killing time in a park on Sundays.
In her third year in Hong Kong, Calsas joined the Philippine Sluggers, a woman’s baseball team that made its debut in league play organized by the Hong Kong Baseball Association in 2009. From then on she spent most of her days off playing ball with her teammates.
Calsas said the team members were like family. They practice hard and play matches seriously even after six days of hard work. Though she admitted that it could be very tiring, she said she felt fully energized after each reunion.
After being made captain of the team, she now assists the coach on assigning roles and counseling the players. She said it was a tough task but she took it on as a challenge and gained satisfaction from it.
With effort and dedication, the Philippine Sluggers clinched the Grade B title in the association’s women’s league play for the 2015-16 season.
Calsas hopes to set up a baseball team when she returns to her home town in Guimaras, an island province in the Philippines, and make more people fall in love with baseball as she did.