BOCAUE, Philippines - One lucky PBA fan had his wish come true at the Christmas Clasico.
But Lando Bago is no ordinary fan: he just happens to be the doppelgänger of Barangay Ginebra’s LA Tenorio. Only a bit shorter.
Bago had been hoping to meet Tenorio personally for more than a year now. He watched the Governors’ Cup finals in 2016 and was also present during Games 5, 6 and 7 of the season-ending conference finals this year in an attempt to come across his idol face-to-face.
Luckily, just before the year ends, the Boholano, who attended Ginebra’s Christmas Day game against the Magnolia Hotshots fully clad in Tenorio’s sportswear, finally got to share a moment with the Ginebra star.
“Napakasaya po. Magtatapos ang 2017, maraming mga nangyayari, ngayon, ilang araw na matatapos ang 2017, napakamemorable na nakadaupang palad ko ang aking idolo at nakapapagpapicture sa kaniya. Alaala na hindi makakalimutan,” said the 38-year-old.
(This really made me happy. 2017 is coming to a close and so many things have happened. There are only a few days before the end of 2017 and this is really a memorable moment for me that I got to meet my idol and take a picture with him. This is a memory that I will never forget.)
Bago did not have the luxury of watching the PBA growing up in his hometown in Mabini, Bohol. It was only when he moved to Sta. Maria, Bulacan in 2006 that he got the chance to witness Asia’s oldest basketball league in person.
“Noong kasikatan ng Ginebra, maraming nagsasabi na kamukha ko raw si LA Tenorio kaya nainspire ako, masaya ako, natutuwa ako na maraming tao ang tumatawag sakin ng ‘idol LA.’ Pinagbibigyan ko sila, maraming nagpapapicture,” said Bago, a factory worker at the Philippine Batteries, Inc. here in Bulacan.
(Many were telling me that I look like LA Tenorio, that is why I got inspired and I got happy that many people were calling me “idol LA.” When they ask for a picture, I cater to them.)
Asked what he wants for his look-alike, Bago wished for Tenorio’s good health, especially after the fiery floor general underwent an elbow surgery a month ago.
“Sana tuloy tuloy pa yung career niya at malagpasan niya pa ‘yung minimithi pa niya at patuloy pa siyang bigyan ng blessings ni God.”
(I wish that his career will flourish and he achieves the things he want to do and that God give him more blessings.) – Rappler.com
Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.