DROWNED amidst all the brouhaha over the non-inclusion of naturalized player Andray Blatche in the Gilas Pilipinas lineup for the 2014 Asian Games is the ‘big revelation’ of the recently concluded FIBA World Cup – June Mar Fajardo.
From a fumbling back-up center in the FIBA Asia Cup early August in Wuhan, China, the pride of Pinamungahan, Cebu was a stellar of strength in the limited playing minutes given to him in Gilas' first four games in the group stages in Seville, Spain.
With Blatche ineligible to play due to an overlooked Olympic Council of Asia ruling and the serious doubts on Marcus Douthit's physical and mental preparedness in time for the team’s first game in the quadrennial meet on Sept. 23, this might well be the much-awaited coming out party for a player whom the wise-cracking PBA commentators christened as ‘The Kraken.’
An early clash with Iran and towering Hamed Haddadi will put Fajardo's newfound confidence to the test which many, including his mentor Ramon ‘El Presidente’ Fernandez, believes ‘Bisdak’(short for Bisayang Dako which loosely means one is a pure Bisaya or in the case of Junemar, a huge Bisaya) will pass with flying colors.
Here is an artwork by Cebuano graphics artist Hael Pinat as a tribute to Junemar Fajardo.