Toshiba PBA Legends NZ Tour 2012 - Wellington
PBA stands for Philippine Basketball Association. The basketball team was composed of retired professional PBA players from the Philippines who were invited to do exhibition games in New Zealand. The PBA Legends (PBAL) line-up were as follows: Allan "The Triggerman" Caidic, Alvin "The Captain" Patrimonio, Jojo "Mr. Clutch" Lastimosa, Johnny "The Fying A" Abarrientos, Vince "The Prince" Hizon, Kenneth "Captain Marbel" Duremdes, Noli "The Tank" Locsin and Jeffrey "The Jet" Cariaso. The tour started from Auckland, down to Tauranga and finally down to Wellington where both the Legends and Wellington Players had the most fun and exciting games.
Although this event is not a Bulwagan Foundation Trust production but the trust with the Wellington Filipino Community Choir and other volunteers were greatly involved in this event for Wellington.
Odette Madrisa who was then a trustee was working for New Zealand Home Loans - Massey (Auckland) where the latter was one of the producers of the tour, a joint venture with Emerge Entertainment and West Auckland Filipino Association (WAFSA). Being a Wellingtonian herself, Odette was appointed to plan, organise and market the Wellington leg of the PBAL NZ Tour 2012. Since she was a trustee, herself, she personally requested the Bulwagan Foundation Trust to collaborate and organise this big event with her in Wellington. And being member of the Wellington Filipino Community Choir, she also personally requested the assistance of the members. Family members were also up to assist for this event.
The original title for this event was 'PBA Legends New Zealand Tour 2012'. When one of the trustees, Dinna O'Meara, through her connections managed to get Toshiba Australia and New Zealand as the major sponsor, thus, the name of the event became the "Toshiba PBA Legends NZ Tour 2012". Rey Non, another trustee who used to be the president of the Wellington Filipino Sports Association (WFSA) managed to convince two retired Tall Blacks basketball players to play against the PBA Legends while Manny Mendoza, a supporter, managed to find the rest of the finest players in the Wellington community to play against the Legends. Judith Mendoza, another trustee, managed to get Plumbing World (Paraparaumo Branch) to be a sponsor and Odette Madrisa managed to get Toyota Rutherford and Bond to be a sponsor.
The Wellington Filipino Community Choir also extended their help from singing the National Anthems to assisting as runners, ushers/usherettes, ticket sellers, etc. in the Meet and Greet and exhibition games. A special mention to Robert Ty as he negotiated the menu and price of the food to feed the crew, players and others who are involved in the event. The food was plentiful and the price greatly discounted. There were also volunteers from the community, especially through the influence of Judith Mendoza, to assist as marshals and runners as well.
The Wellington Leg
The meet and greet, basketball clinic, preliminary games and exhibition games were all held at the ASB Sports Centre in Kilbirnie on 26 August 2012.
The basketball clinic was conducted by Jeffrey Cariaso, Vince Hizon and Jay Magat. Young basketball players and enthusiasts attended this clinic. The preliminary games were actively participated by basketball teams from Hawkes Bay and Wairarapa. The meet and greet were greatly attended and participated by basketball enthusiasts filling up the Maitairangi Room at the ASB Sports Centre. The Wellington leg exhibition game was attended by more than 550 people and it was the most organised event with disciplined but engaging happy audience!