MYP cagers rout ‘Legends’, 89-81
Buluan, Maguindanao — The nation’s team of basketball veterans came here all the way from Metro Manila to slug it out Saturday night with mixed players from Bangsamoro villages – in a spectacular game organized by local sectors in support of the government peace deal with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).
Eleven members of the so-called Philippine Basketball Association team “Legends” led by Fortunato Co became more enthusiastic about the potentials of the envisaged Bangsamoro governance when they lost the game, 81-89, to the host “Maguindanao Youth for Peace” team.
The playing coach Co, attributing the defeat to “lousy” performance because “perhaps of old age,” said their loss had proven that the people of Mindnanao, when working together with firm “determination and teamwork,” can hurdle the challenges besetting the age-old dream for peace and prosperity in the south.
Co said the Team “Legends” comprising retirees of the PBA heeded the invitation of Maguindanao Governor Esmael Mangudadatu to a friendship match with the MYP as a gesture of support to the implementation of the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro signed last March 27 by the government and MILFpanels.
He said the two panels and other concerned sectors should exude “respect” and “sincerity” in carrying out the intents of the peace deal to end decades of rebellion in Mindanao, and harness the untapped potentials of the region.
Fellow retiree Bong Alvarez, known erstwhile as PBA’s “Mr. Excitement,” said he saw great potentials among the 16 MYP team players to become national figures in basketball if given the wide opportunity to develop skills and proper exposure once peace reigned in the south. (Ali G. Macabalang)