BASILAN coach Jerson Cabiltes is one of the frontliners in the country's fight against the global COVID-19 pandemic.
A kagawad in Barangay 359 in Manila, the youthful mentor has been tasked to enforce the enhanced community quarantine and maintain order within his jurisdiction as the nation hopes to soon see the light from this crisis.
"Syempre, nakakapagod dahil we help in keeping our barangay safe at night," he said.
"Pero what is happening is beyond sports and I am just doing my part in this battle against COVID-19. Yung pagod wala yun."
Despite his community obligations, Cabiltes also does not forget of his responsibilities as the coach for the Steel.
"From time to time, I have been watching videos of our games, doing some scouting. Because of the quarantine period, I have more time to study our opponent," he said as Basilan is doing its best to prepare against no. 1 seed Davao Occidental.
The virus outbreak has forced the ongoing South Division semifinals between the Steel and the Tigers in the 2020 Chooks-to-Go Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League (MPBL) Lakan Cup playoffs to go on a screeching halt.
That delayed the do-or-die Game Three tussle between the Jumbo Plastic-backed Basilan and the Cocolife-supported Davao Occidental.
The lockdown may have prevented the Steel from staging practices, but Cabiltes has given a stern instruction to his wards to stay in shape while advising them to stay indoors during this crisis.
"I remind my players to always stay in shape because we really don't know when will COVID-19 end. Just giving them workouts to do at home during this quarantine period," he said, giving special mention to top guys in Allyn Bulanadi and Hesed Gabo.
More than anything, Cabiltes could only tip his hat to everyone who are in the frontlines of this medical battle.
"Sa ating mga doctor, nurse, sundalo, barangay officials at iba pang frontliners, kayo po ang ating bagong bayani," he said.