THERE was an unexpected positive update the other week, a time when Cebu City was at loggerheads about the latest in quarantine rules.
This one was from Liloan, and it’s about the town’s sports stadium.
Mayor Christina Frasco posted a diagram of the stadium and said it will soon have a world-class pool and grandstand, and that’s music to Cebuano sports
Our lone sports venue in the city, the Cebu City Sports Center, is ageing while the planned Mandaue Sports Complex of Mayor Jonas Cortes has yet to go beyond the drawing board. It’s good that Liloan is taking the charge in thinking long term about having its own sports venue.
Don’t think that at the time of the pandemic when everyone is tightening belts that this is ill-advised. This wasn’t planned this year. I think a couple or more years ago, when Mary Joy Tabal had a running program for Liloan’s under-priviledged kids there were already plans for this stadium.
And given how the Cebu City Sports Center has played a key role in helping city residents have an active lifestyle, which has led to a surge of fitness-related events, I’m sure having its own sports stadium will do wonders for the landscape in Liloan.
Of course, the time will come when we will have Department of Education meets anew and perhaps just as the finishing touches of its new stadium is done, Liloan can bid for major events like the Central Visayas Regional Athletic Association or even the Palarong Pambansa.
It may not have enough hotel rooms for such a meet, but it’s not that far from Cebu or Mandaue City.
Though Mayor Frasco didn’t mention a football field, the first thing I noticed about the blueprint of the stadium was that nice space in the middle huge enough for a decent-sized pitch. Having another one here wouldn’t hurt. (Yes, I assume in the future, we will return to the time when we will have football tournaments every weekend.) And if by world-class grandstand, she means individual seats and not plain bleachers, then perhaps we can even dream of having international matches again.
Cebu City, which hosted two international matches and an Asian Football Confederation event, is no longer considered a venue for Azkals matches because the grandstand at the CCSC no longer passes the AFC standard.
I can’t wait to see this new stadium in person once it is finished.