When SMART Gilas Pilipinas took on Chinese-Taipei in its first homestand in the 2019 FIBA World Cup Qualifiers, Terrence Romeo, one of the team’s pool members, was sitting at the patron section of the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.
The scoring sensation that lit it up during the 2017 FIBA Asia Cup could not join his brothers-at-arm this time around as he is nursing a right knee injury.
“Nagthe-therapy. Pagkatapos ng therapy, strengthening,” the 25-year-old said, giving an update on how he is doing. “Ibibigay ko yung best ko para makabalik agad. Di natin puwedeng madaliin baka mamaya di 100-percent.
“Mas okay na yung one hundred-percent na alam nating may maitutulong tayo sa team.”
Though still recovering, Romeo, who was sitted beside Bounty Agro Ventures Inc. president Ronald Mascarinas, was just like everyone else during the game. He was seen cheering wildly, shouting his heart out to show his support for Gilas. By the end of the night, he lost his voice. Moreover, he was happy.
“Nakaka-miss na maglaro sa harap ng mga kababayan natin, nakaka-miss yung sigawan nila. Pero tuwang tuwa ako kasi parang nag-flashback ako nung kabataan ko na pag nanonood ako ng mga idol ko, napapatayo ako sa upuan, kumakaway ako sa kanila,” beamed the four-year pro after the Philippines’ 90-83 triumph.
“Para akong bata na pinapanood ang mga idol ko. Masarap.”
One of his best “fan” moments though was seeing Jayson Castro lead the Philippines once again to victory. Dubbed as the best point guard in Asia, Castro finished with 20 points, four rebounds, and four assists.
Even if he has played with Castro multiple times already, Romeo admitted that he is still a fanboy of his.
“Parang bumalik ako sa college na nanonood ako sa dorm, pinapanood ko yung TNT, tuwang tuwa ako sa ginagawa ni kuya Jayson. Kanina, every time na nakaka-score si kuya Jayson, talagang binibigay ko ang lahat sa pagchee-cheer,” Romeo furthered. “Imagine, naging teammate ko yun, naging roommate ko, ang dami kong natutunan sa kanya, tapos napapanood ko siya.
“Sobrang thankful ko na hindi pa nag-reretire si kuya Jayson.”
Come the second leg of the qualifiers, every fan is hoping to see Castro and Romeo together again on the court.