Getting to Know Sabong – A Closer Look at Cockfighting


Cockfighting, known as sabong in the Philippines, is a widely enjoyed activity. It’s a big-money business, often called a “national sport.” The roots of this tradition in the Philippines can be traced back to ancient times before colonization. Similar fights were documented in the Indus Valley and early civilizations.

Humans have a long history of enjoying animal fights as a form of entertainment. Bullfighting and cockfighting are the most well-known. Cockfighting has been around for over 6,000 years. Even though many places around the world have banned it, the Philippines has a unique and prominent position in the world of cockfighting.

A Journey into Philippine Sabong History

A Journey into Philippine Sabong History

Sabong in the Philippines has a history spanning 6,000 years and was practiced in various parts of the world. Antonio Pigafetta, a chronicler of Ferdinand Magellan, first recorded the sport in 1521. Since then, it has stayed a well-loved activity across the Philippines, except for a possible pause due to the suspension of e-sabong operations in May 2022.

The Intriguing World of eSabong

The Intriguing World of eSabong

It is the informal term for a modern form of cockfighting betting that’s become very popular in the Philippines. When the traditional cockfighting pits were not regulated and attracted only small crowds, the government didn’t feel the need to step in because the betting amounts were not significant.

Now, with e-sabong, where people can bet on cockfights online, things have changed. The betting activity has grown, and the government is now motivated to take action because the wagering amounts involved are substantial.

Exploring the Best Platforms

Exploring the Best Platforms

Sabong International 

It is an online cockfighting platform in the Philippines that became popular during the COVID-19 outbreak, gaining attention from numerous vloggers. Over the years, the platform has experienced significant growth and expanded its offerings to include various games like Hi-Lo, Spider Fight, Color Fun Game, Coin Master Game, and more to cater to its growing user base.

Today, it is still active and provides online cockfighting services. It is supported by DS88 for its digital cockfighting offerings, ensuring a seamless and engaging experience for users.

Sabong Worldwide.

It is a well-liked online cockfighting platform in the Philippines, providing a thrilling experience for players globally. It stands out for its easy-to-use interface, making it simple for both beginners and experienced players to explore and enjoy the platform’s many features. In summary, it is an excellent cockfighting platform that ensures a fun and accessible gaming experience for players of all levels.

Sabong Express 

It is a well-known online cockfighting platform in the Philippines, owned by Bong Pineda, a gaming mogul from Pampanga. Before each fight begins, the platform posts the day’s matchups on its social media page, giving bettors time to consider their bets.


Pitmaster used to be a well-liked online cockfighting platform among Filipino gamblers. Atong Ang, the owner, chose to stop the platform’s operations when President Rodrigo Duterte instructed the shutdown of online cockfighting. While this decision prevents younger and low-income bettors from losing money, it also means the end of the free dialysis program provided by the platform.

Understanding Online Sabong

Understanding Online Sabong


Before the fight, also called the faceoff, roosters are matched up based on their characteristics like height, weight, size, and wingspan. To make the contests fair, the roosters need to be similar in all these aspects, preventing any unfair advantages.

The owners of the matched roosters also decide on the blades to attach to the legs. These blades have different sizes and types, including single and double-edged. The specific equipment attached to the roosters depends on the agreements reached by both owners.


Before the fight begins, called the ruweda, the gamecocks are showcased by their owners in the ring. This helps fans and bettors observe their temperaments, providing valuable information for making betting decisions. The announcer sets the fight terms, and the referee is ready to declare the winner when the sabong match kicks off.

During the ruweda, the kristo starts accepting wagers from the crowd. They either remember the terms and payouts or use ledgers to record bets and payouts. This time also allows online sabong bettors to assess the roosters and place their live online sabong bets before the match officially begins.


Once all the match’s rules are set, and bets are placed, the roosters are released into the ring. They engage in pecking or slashing each other with blades. The fight concludes when one bird dies or the referee declares a clear winner. No appeals are allowed, and the referee’s decision is final.

If the losing bird survives, it might face the risk of being killed later due to the injuries sustained in the match. The winning bird, too, may suffer serious injuries that could impact its ability to fight in the future.

 A Guide to Online Betting

A Guide to Online Betting

Many people are intrigued by e-sabong, but some might find the process and rules a bit confusing. To get started, you have to sign up on a platform and deposit money into your account to watch and join online sabong matches.

Similar to in-person sabong, online matches involve two roosters assigned to meron (favored) or wala (underdog) sides. You have the option to bet before each match begins.

Betting in online cockfighting is different; there are no kristos using hand signs. Instead, various terms are used:

  • “Parehas” means a draw.
  • “Lo dies” multiplies your bet by 1.25.
  • “Walo-anim” turns a PHP 400 bet into PHP 550.
  • “Tres” can make your PHP 1,000 bet into PHP 1,500.
  • “Sampu-anim” changes a PHP 600 bet to PHP 1,000.
  • “Doblado” turns a PHP 1,000 bet into PHP 2,000.

The number of bets and winnings in online sabong depends on factors like owner and viewer bets. Also, the time of day matters, with morning fights having fewer viewers and lower bets compared to those in the afternoon to night time.

You can withdraw your online sabong winnings anytime through e-wallets or other processors like money transfers.

Key Differences in Online and Traditional Cockfighting

Key Differences in Online and Traditional Cockfighting

Online Sabong

Online sabong means rooster fighting that happens on the internet using live streaming, online betting, and virtual involvement. Different online cockfighting platforms, like online slot games, are available in the Philippines, making it easy for people from any location in the country to join. These platforms offer more choices for fans.

Pros of Online Sabong

There are various possible benefits of online sabong in the Philippines:

  • Convenience:People can enjoy cockfighting matches from their homes or any spot with internet access, saving time and travel expenses. This makes it easy for participants, removing the need to go to physical cockfighting arenas.
  • Accessibility: It becomes available to a broader audience, including the elderly, those with disabilities, and people in remote areas. It enables those who might face challenges attending live cockfighting events to take part in the tradition.
  • Safety: Engaging in online sabong eliminates the physical risks associated with handling live animals in cockfighting. It provides a safer option, reducing the chances of harm to roosters and handlers.
  • Economic Opportunities: Online sabong platforms offer economic opportunities for operators, breeders, trainers, and handlers. By attracting a larger audience, these platforms generate more revenue, contributing to the overall growth of the cockfighting industry in the Philippines.

Traditional Sabong

It is a cultural and historical tradition in the Philippines. It’s where rooster fights happen in community arenas, with people betting in person and engaging in rituals. This practice holds cultural importance in many parts of the country.

Pros of Traditional Sabong

It is linked to the following benefits:

  • Preserving Traditional Breeding Practices: People use old methods to breed and raise gamecocks. This helps keep and promote traditional farming knowledge and sustainable practices.
  • Social Bonding and Community Engagement: It is a way for people to socialize and connect, bringing together individuals from various backgrounds to enjoy the sport. It builds social bonds and relationships in the community.
  • Livelihood and Economic Impact: It has been a way for many Filipinos to earn a living, especially in rural areas where cockfighting is a crucial part of the economy. It brings income to breeders, trainers, handlers, and others in the industry.

Legality of Sabong Gambling in the Philippines

Legality of Sabong Gambling in the Philippines

It has both legal and illegal statuses in the Philippines. Legal cockfighting occurs in licensed cockpits recognized by Local Government Units (LGUs). Illegitimate sabong games, on the other hand, take place in makeshift halls or even on the streets, particularly in rural areas. While these games might be considered illegal, authorities are not very strict in catching those involved. In both legal and illegal sabong, attaching knives or gaffs to the gamecocks’ legs is deemed permissible.


It has a dual status in the Philippines, with legal cockfighting taking place in licensed cockpits, while illegal activities occur in makeshift venues, especially in rural areas.

Attaching knives or gaffs to gamecocks’ legs is considered legal in sabong, and it serves as a critical element in the traditional fighting matches.

Despite the illegal status of some activities, authorities may not strictly enforce regulations, leading to a complex situation regarding the apprehension of those involved.

Yes, licensed cockpits operate under regulations known to Local Government Units (LGUs) in the Philippines, ensuring a legal and controlled environment for cockfighting.

Legal sabong occurs in designated licensed cockpits recognized by LGUs, while illegal sabong often happens in makeshift venues or on the streets, especially in rural areas, creating a distinction between the two.


In conclusion, Sabong at Sabong PH offers enthusiasts an engaging platform to experience the rich tradition of cockfighting. With a legal and regulated environment, it provides a secure space for both participants and viewers to enjoy the matches. The platform’s commitment to promoting responsible gaming adds a layer of integrity to the experience. Overall, Sabong PH serves as a bridge between tradition and modernity, bringing the timeless practice of sabong into the digital age with convenience and authenticity.