Former Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) player Cris ‘Jumbo’ Bolando was killed over the weekend, following a road collision in Cambodia.
Last Sunday night, former Panay News photographer Joy Bien Lim, who is currently based in Cambodia, informed me of the incident.
At first, I didn’t believe it, so I called my colleagues in Manila to confirm the report.
Lim sent me a copy of a report from a Cambodia-based news source indicating the incident occurred around 9:35 (local Cambodian time) along National Road 7 at Chup Pong Village in the Tbong Khmum province.
Local officials said it was a hit-and-run, after a blue Isuzu automobile struck the motorcycle Bolado was operating.
The fender-bender reportedly left the former basketball star with a broken foot, wherein he subsequently died while in transit to the hospital.
During his prime, the ‘gentle giant’ won 11 league championships, with 10 consecutive finals appearances. Three of his championships came with the Alaska Milkmen in 1996, when they earned the “Grand Slam” by capturing all three conferences; his other titles came with San Miguel, Coca-Cola, Purefoods, and Gordon’s Gin.
After retiring in 2003, Bolado continued to share his love of the game by conducting clinics across the country.
Through writing this, I can pay my final respects to the ‘gentle giant’ and one of the most humble PBA players I have met.
* * *
The Panaad Park and Stadium will once again witness history with Ceres-Negros FC hosting a pair of Philippines Football League (PFL) matches, a meeting with Global Cebu FC on September 24 and Ilocos United FC on September 30.
“[PFL] is a very important competition for us,” said Ceres FC captain Martin Steuble. “It allows us to represent the club internationally next year.”
The winner of the league qualifies for the preliminary round of the AFC Champions League, while the runner-up earns a berth in the AFC Cup playoff round.
Admission is free for all PFL matches, but fans can reserve choice seats.
Kickoff times and reservation details are available on the official Ceres-Negros FC Facebook page./WDJ