The Philippines’ Sabong History and Evolution

You will experience a Filipino national activity’s distinct and exhilarating delight when you play sabong. It allows you to experience a significant and everlasting component of the culture of the Philippines. No other activity in the Philippines can compare to the notoriety and age of sabong, often known as cockfighting. Examine the origins of online sabong in the Philippines as well as its development over time.

sabong history

What is Sabong?

What is Sabong

The activity of cockfighting is referred to by the Filipino word sabong. The objective of the sport is to determine which of two cocks is superior by pitting them against each other in a competition. The game is always quite violent, and to ramp up the excitement, participants may occasionally tie guns to the cocks’ legs. Because the match is over when one of the cocks is knocked out, some people call it a fight to the finish. People congregate in arenas to watch and cheer on the cockfighters as they rip each other to shreds. Cockfighting is the best recreational sport in the Philippines, the only activity that the rich and the poor participate in and enjoy.

Pre-colonial Era of Sabong

Pre-colonial Era of Sabong
  • Sabong was a well-liked kind of spectator sport in the Philippines before the arrival of European colonizers. It was a sort of entertainment, a method for resolving disagreements and displaying one’s money and rank. 
  • According to many historical reports, the cockfighting culture may have already been established in the Philippines far before the advent of Spanish invaders in the 16th century. Historical artifacts, such as ceramics, that feature cockfighting and early Spanish chronicles refer to the Filipinos’ fondness for the sport of cockfighting.
  • Participants would place bets on the outcome of the matches played during the pre-colonial era of cockfighting, which took place in open-air arenas or cockpits. Cockfighting was also linked to various rituals and beliefs, such as using charms or amulets to improve the rooster’s ability to fight. 
  • During this period, sabong was primarily played locally, with matches typically held inside a community or within a specific region. In the past, the standards and guidelines for playing Sabong were also more uniform than they are now.

The Period Following World War II

The period following World War II has brought significant changes and developments to cockfighting in the Philippines. This era marked a transition from traditional practices to a more organized and regulated form of the sport.

The Period Following World War II

Growth and Popularity

After World War II, cockfighting experienced a surge in popularity among Filipinos. The sport became a means of entertainment and social bonding for many, attracting a diverse audience. The post-war economic recovery contributed to this growth, as people had more disposable income for leisure activities.

Modernization and Commercialization

During this period, Sabong started to modernize. Cockfighting arenas, known as “sabungan,” were built to accommodate larger audiences, and the quality of the facilities improved. The commercial aspect of Sabong also became more pronounced, with sponsors, advertisements, and televised matches contributing to the sport’s financial viability.

The Evolution of Online Sabong

The evolution of online sabong, the traditional Filipino cockfighting sport, into the realm of online platforms, represents a significant transformation in how the sport is practiced, enjoyed, and regulated.

Online Version of Sabong

Digitalization of Sabong

The advent of the internet and digital technology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries paved the way for cockfighting’s transition into the online sphere. Initially, enthusiasts and entrepreneurs began experimenting with online Sabong, creating websites and platforms dedicated to facilitating matches, betting, and streaming.

Preservation of Tradition

Despite its digital evolution, online Sabong strives to preserve the traditional aspects of the sport. Efforts are made to maintain the cultural significance, rituals, and camaraderie associated with Sabong, even in the virtual arena.

Technological Advancements in Gamecock Care

Advancements in technology have also extended to the care and breeding of gamecocks. Online resources and communities dedicated to Gamecock care have emerged, providing information and support to breeders and enthusiasts.

Contextual Information Regarding the Sabong Gameplay

To compete in the tournament, roosters must first complete the appropriate training, which typically includes instruction in various combat techniques. On the day of the competition, the owners of the cocks would stay in a designated place outside the cockpit called ulutan. This is where the cocks are put together based on physical criteria such as height, weight, and wingspan. 

Contextual Information Regarding the Sabong Gameplay

After the cocks have been coupled, a gaff, known as a tari in the local language, and a leg band with individual identifying numbers are connected to each cock’s leg. The length of the gaff is dictated by the size of the cock’s leg, and it must be fixed at the appropriate angle and height to cause the most harm possible with the least amount of motion.

Online Version of Sabong

One of the primary advantages of online sabong platforms is the ease of access. Enthusiasts can now enjoy their favorite sport without the need to travel to physical arenas.

Online Version of Sabong
  • Live Streaming: The matches are streamed live from physical cockpits nationwide. The live streams are typically high-quality and provide viewers with a clear view of the action.
  • Betting: Online cockfighting platforms, like sabong international allow participants to place bets on the outcome of the matches. The bets can be placed before the match starts or during the game. The amount of money that can be bet varies depending on the platform, but some platforms allow users to bet as little as PHP 10.
  • Results: The results of the matches are announced immediately after they end. Sabong international platforms usually update the results in real time, and winnings are automatically credited to the users’ accounts.
  • Virtual Arenas: Sabong international often create virtual theaters where users can watch the matches and place bets. These virtual arenas usually feature high-quality graphics and sound effects, providing an immersive experience for viewers.
  • Betting Options: Some platforms also offer various betting options, including placing bets on the winning rooster, the number of rounds in the match, and the moves the roosters will use during the fight.


There is reason to be optimistic and excited about the future of online Sabong. We anticipate future improvements in user experience, streaming quality, and the incorporation of augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) technologies, making online Sabong International even more immersive. These developments can be expected as technology continues to advance.

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