Beermen get boost

Photograph by Rio Deluvio for the Daily Tribune @tribunephl_rio JUNE Mar Fajardo will be back in action to power San Miguel Beer in the crucial stretch of the PBA Commissioner’s Cup.

Three-time Philippine Basketball Association champion Terrence Romeo makes his return and plays his first game of the season when San Miguel Beer shoots for an all-important win against also-ran Terrafirma in the Commissioner’s Cup elimination round.

After being sidelined by a back injury, Romeo will be making a return to provide additional firepower for the reigning champions, who are making a last push for the playoffs.

San Miguel also gets an opportunity to break in the finals Most Valuable Player of this tournament three years ago when it takes on the Dyip in the main game at 5:45 p.m. on Wednesday at the Philsports Arena.

Known for his scoring prowess and steady quarterbacking, Romeo averaged 16.7 points in last year’s Philippine Cup and 12.7 points per game in the import-laced Governors’ Cup last season.

His return gives head coach Leo Austria added depth to his already superb backcourt mix that includes CJ Perez, Chris Ross, Simon Enciso and Jericho Cruz.

As if it is not yet enough, six-time PBA MVP June Mar Fajardo is likewise ready to return after a seven-game absence.

Sidelined for more than a month after underdoing operation on his throat in October, Fajardo will be back to his familiar role as the team’s go-to-guy at the post.

San Miguel Beer team manager Gee Abanilla confirmed the news to Daily Tribune.

“They’re both good to go,” Abanilla said in a telephone conversation.

“This will be a good opportunity to slowly break them in.”

After Wednesday game, the Beermen will prepare for the remaining two games left on their schedule where they face crack teams TNT on 26 November and Meralco on 2 December.

The Beermen are coming off a morale-boosting 108-104 triumph over Phoenix Super LPG, putting the team in the seventh spot with a 4-5 win-loss record, but needing to win its remaining games to avoid complications.

If San Miguel is in dire need of a win, TNT is in desperate mode and will have to earn it the hard way when it takes on tournament leader Bay Area in the other game at 3 p.m.

The Tropang Giga will certainly have their hands full facing a Dragons squad that is looking to wrap up its elimination round campaign on a winning note and lock up a spot in the top two. A victory would guarantee the visiting team’s hold of a twice-to-beat advantage going to the next round.

For TNT, it’s going to be win and survive and such mantra will be upheld by coach Chot Reyes and his troops throughout their remaining games in this mid-season tournament.

A consistent fixture in the playoffs, including two finals stints in the last four conferences, the Tropang Giga are now on the brink of elimination, carrying a 4-6 record at ninth spot.

TNT is hoping new import Matt Mobley can immediately make a splash for his new squad.

Listed at 6-foot-4, the German League veteran is also looking to make a good impression that would possibly earn him a spot for the season-ending Governors’ Cup.

The height limit for the Governors’ Cup is 6-foot-6.


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