Joy Tabal proud of latest feat of fellow bisaya June Mar Fajardo in PBA
With Cebuano basketball superstar June Mar Fajardo leading the San Miguel Beermen to a historic fourth straight PBA Philippine Cup crown on Friday night, one happy fan was fellow Visayan athlete and Olympian Mary Joy Tabal.
The four-time MVP Fajardo from Pinamungajan, Cebu scored 42 points and grabbed 20 rebounds in helping San Miguel claw back from 23 points down and beat the Magnolia Hotshots in double overtime, 108-99, in Game 5 to secure the All-Filipino title again.
San Miguel, thus, became the only team in the league to win four straight All-Filipino titles with Fajardo, a six-time Best Player of the Conference winner, being part of every single championship-winning team.
Tabal, herself a history-making athlete being the first Filipina marathoner to qualify for the Olympics and the first woman to win the National Milo Marathon title five straight times, was among the many Cebuanos who cheered for their fellow bisaya.
“Proud kaau ko kay Junemar kay Cebuano gud so all out support jud ta,” Tabal, from barangay Guba, Cebu City, said. (I’m very proud for June Mar because he’s a Cebuano so I’m giving my all-out support.)
Tabal has actually been a fan of San Miguel even before Fajardo’s entry to the team in 2012.
In a Cebu Daily News article last year, Tabal shared that basketball was one of the sports she loved when she was a kid. And ever since she started watching basketball, San Miguel was always her favorite team.
So it was no surprise that Tabal was one of legions of SMB fans who watched tensely as San Miguel completed the historic win on Friday night.
“Been watching the finals since game 1 ‘coz I really support SMB and of course June Mar,” said Tabal, who watched from Italy, where she is busy training for her stint in the Asian Games this August. “I’ve been a die-hard fan of SMB since grade school and high school, so I was so tensed last night, especially since it reached two overtimes.”
As the final buzzer sounded and the Beermen raised their fourth straight and eight overall All-Filipino title, Tabal also celebrated with the team.
“That was really for them. SMB deserves [the title] and June Mar deserves the MVP title.”
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