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Cinderella Man

I could not afford to buy a phone so I would wait for my older brother so I could borrow his device.

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GERALD “Dlar” Trinchera treats Esports as his ticket out of poverty. / PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF GERALD TRINCHERA/FB

Gerald “Dlar” Trinchera of Onic PH stepped into the gaming world with nothing in his pocket.

But he had two things that made him successful: Hunger and love for the game.

A hardcore gamer for most part of his life, Trinchera admitted that he had to brush off the challenges of poverty just to emerge as one of the top Esports players in the country. In fact, he was so poor that he couldn’t afford to buy a phone just to play MOBA Mobile Legends: Bang Bang back in the day.

“I came from a poor family. I didn’t want to depend on my parents. I try to be persistent so what I did was pilot different games,” Trinchera said, adding that he had to use other people’s accounts just to play Mobile Legends and make some money to get by.

“I would stay up late for three days and the only time I sleep was during matching up just so I could earn money to pay for my tuition fee. After that, I barely asked my parents for financial help.”

Trinchera cut his teeth playing a number of games on personal computer.

But then, his schoolmates urged him to try Mobile Legends to earn extra income and help ease his family’s financial burden.

Despite not having a mobile phone, he still tried his best to find a way and pushed himself to become a better player.

“I started playing Mobile Legends when my schoolmates asked me to join them. We were playing other games when they told me that I should try it to help my family in its finances,” said Trinchera, whose rags-to-riches story has the ingredients of a fairy tale.

“That was the time that I didn’t have a mobile phone yet. I could not afford to buy a phone so I would wait for my older brother so I could borrow his device.”

Trinchera, like most people, was immediately hooked to the game the moment he got his hands on it.

The game had lit up his competitive fire and — after suffering some early miscues — he started grinding 13 hours a day to become better, giving birth to a very promising Esport career.

“We place bets every time we play. Although we always end up losing, we really enjoy the experience.

“They ended up talking trash to us when we told them to give us two to three weeks to improve. My teammates were ‘Lift,’ who now coaches Work Auster Force, and ‘Moht.’ We would start playing at 5 p.m. and end at 6 a.m. That’s how my career started.”

Now, Trinchera is billed as one of best offlaners in the world of competitive Esports.

His road to greatness wasn’t easy, but he vows to go all out, not only to give Onic a title in the Mobile Legends: Bang Bang Professional League (MPL) Season 7, but also inspire young players who are also using Esports as their one-way ticket out of poverty.

“What you can expect from us is not just simple, but fierce mentality, something that they would be scared of.”

“In all honesty, no one can stop me because it’s all up to me. If I commit a mistake, I only have myself to blame. I know I can beat anyone.”

Trinchera said winning the MPL crown is not an overnight process.

After all, the music is still playing and the clock has yet to strike 12 for “Cinderella Man.”

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