In rare meeting at PBA semis, legends Jaworski, Fernandez witness a blowout | Inquirer Sports

In rare meeting at PBA semis, legends Jaworski, Fernandez witness a blowout

/ 01:50 AM March 16, 2018


To the fans’ delight, former Toyota brethren reunited on Thursday at Mall of Asia Arena when legends Robert Jaworski and Ramon Fernandez watched Game 4 of the 2018 PBA Philippine Cup semifinals between San Miguel and Ginebra.

The two greats exchanged pleasantries during the quarter break between the first and second periods and relished the rare opportunity to see each other again.


“I’m happy to see him. It’s fine and wonderful. It’s good that he was able to watch. A friend invited me to watch today and I’m happy that he’s here,” said Jaworski.


“We just said hi to each other. It’s been a long time since we’ve seen each other. I know we’ve bumped with each other somewhere, but I just can’t remember,” Fernandez shared.

After being teammates for 11 years under the Tamaraws brand, the two went their separate ways with Jaworski going to Gilbey’s (now Ginebra) and Fernandez to Beer Hausen/ Manila Beer, starting one of the hottest rivalries in the 43-year history of the PBA.

But on Thursday, they were mere spectators seated on opposite sides of the VIP section as they got a closer look at how the game has evolved.

The game, though, was not up to par to their standards as both agreed that San Miguel’s 102-81 Game 4 victory over Ginebra was more of the Gin Kings’ failure to show up to the game than the Beermen’s overall prowess.

“I always watched on TV. But today, they weren’t playing. Their focus was not there and I don’t know why,” observed Jaworski, who is seen as the root of Ginebra’s “never say die” spirit.

Fernandez, now a PSC commissioner, even joked: “It was a boring game.”


“San Miguel wasn’t really playing well. It’s just that Ginebra just played really bad. They could play better than that,” he said.

The Gin Kings shot a horrible 43-percent from the field and turned the ball over 18 times, which translated to 20 easy points for the Beermen.

Though Fernandez was glad to see his old San Miguel team get the victory and inch closer to its possible fourth straight Finals appearance in the all-Filipino conference, he would’ve liked a tougher fight from the opposing Ginebra side.

“I like what I saw because San Miguel won, but I didn’t really enjoy the game that much. I would have enjoyed if it was a close game,” he said.

Fernandez, though, is confident that the Beermen could book a return trip to the championship dance.

“I think if they just continue their heads up game, I think they’ll make it. San Miguel has a deeper bench compared to Ginebra, especially that (Greg) Slaughter isn’t there.”

Jaworski, meanwhile, hopes to see more grit from the Ginebra side to have a remote chance to make the comeback and reignite what was once a heated rivalry.

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“In the past, you always want the win no matter what. I want to see that because we owe it to the public,” he said.

TAGS: Barangay Ginebra San Miguel, PBA Philippine Cup, Ramon Fernandez, Robert Jaworski, San Miguel Beermen

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