PBA: Ginebra eyes 5th straight win in first game in 2 weeks

MANILA – Barangay Ginebra will try to make the most out of a rare game in between lengthy breaks in its schedule when it tackles Alaska in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup at Araneta Coliseum on Sunday.
The Ginebra-Alaska tussle is at 6:45 p.m., after Blackwater and Mahindra open the double header at 4:30 p.m.
Ginebra, which last played on April 23 (an 18-point win over TNT), will go on for another 2 weeks of inactivity after facing Alaska, as the league gives way to the Southeast Asian Basketball Championship, which begins on Friday and ends on May 18.
Tim Cone and co. have won 4 in a row, but the prolonged days off could kill their momentum.
“It’s been a tough grind trying to stay sharp during this long All-Star break, and it is especially important to be sharp against Alaska’s pressure defense,” said Cone in
Just like other PBA teams, Ginebra also lent one of its key players to Gilas Pilipinas — Japeth Aguilar.
“Losing Japeth’s presence as a backside defender and rim protector puts a lot of pressure on our defense to be perfect,” Cone said. “Japeth makes up for a lot of our mistakes. But we’re fortunate we’re only losing him for one game.”
The Aces, who are out to snap a 2-game slide, will also have to play minus a key piece, Calvin Abueva, who was also tapped for the national team.

Amer hits 20 as Meralco mangles Phoenix

Baser Amer had 20 points as the Meralco Bolts buried the Phoenix Fuelmasters, 81-66, on Wednesday at the Araneta Coliseum in the elimination round of the 2017 PBA Commissioner's Cup.
The Bolts outscored the Fuelmasters 21-13 in the second period to carry a 34-29 edge at the half.
Phoenix struggled to chip away at the lead, giving the Bolts the chance to deal the lethal blows in the fourth in the lopsided affair.
Chris Newsome scored 19 points off a high 85 percent shooting clip, while import Alex Stephenson tallied 15 with 20 boards.
Phoenix struggled with its shooting the whole game, hitting just 23 of their 72 attempts for 31 percent. They even did worse from deep, connecting on just four of 19 tries from beyond the arc.
Jameel McKay scored 16 points with 16 rebounds, but got little help from the locals as only Cyrus Baguio scored in double figures with 10. RJ Jazul, in particular, shot 1 of 13 from the field in 36 minutes on the floor. — BAP, GMA News

Tour De Lombok Mandalika 2017 welcomes cyclists from 19 countries

Twenty-one cycling teams from 19 countries including Indonesia, Malaysia, New Zealand and Spain arrived in Lombok to participate in the Tour De Lombok (TDLM) 2017, which was held from April 13 to 16.

TDLM 2017 is classified in the “2.2” category by the Union Cyclists International (UCI) after the Philippines. Divided into four legs totaling in 485.6 kilometers, the route passed through Lombok’s main cultural and tourist attractions.

The first leg of the race took riders from the governor's office in Mataram, the capital city of West Nusa Tenggara, to Kuta Beach in Central Lombok with a total distance of 126.3 kilometers. The second leg had the cyclists racing over 113.3 kilometers from Bangsal to Senaru in North Lombok. The third leg covered 112.1 kilometers from Kuta Beach to Sembalun in Central Lombok. The fourth and final leg was a 112-kilometer circuit race consisting of 10 laps in Mataram city.

The organizers coordinated with the local police to ensure safety, resulting in zero road closures throughout the event.
he head of the National Sports Council's (KONI) West Nusa Tenggara branch, Andi Hadiyanto, said the TLDM 2017 was not the only sports-tourism event held in Lombok this year. According to him, this kind of activity is not only aimed at promoting the captivating beauty of Lombok but also at encouraging sports participation by West Nusa Tenggara youth.

“A lot of cyclists were captivated by the beauty of Lombok and the friendliness of people that they encountered along the route of the race,” said Hadiyanto.

Meanwhile, Tourism Minister Arief Yahya said international-scale sports tourism events could have a direct impact on and high media value for Lombok as well as Indonesia. He expressed optimism that Tour De Lombok would boost specific market interest in recreational sports. (asw)

The Jakarta Post

Fil-Am Domingo definitely coming back to Philippines

I'M COMING HOME. Lo Domingo will fly to the US to visit his family there, but will return to the Philippines to keep playing Filipino ball.
The gas ran out for Alab Pilipinas before they even got going in the 2016-2017 Asean Basketball League – but it was a positive maiden season, nonetheless.

Of course, Ray Parks Jr. starred throughout the elimination round while Kiefer Ravena shined in his only two games which came in the semifinals.

Aside from those usual suspects, it was Lo Domingo who turned out to be a revelation.

Through the tournament, the Filipino-American from New Mexico exhibited a non-stop motor that allowed him to impose his will down-low. An undersized forward at only six-foot-five, he was still able to average 12.5 points and 6.5 rebounds.

This, all while also proving to be a more than capable defender – matching up well against the likes of Xavier Alexander and Lenny Daniel.

Now that their ABL run is over, Domingo admitted that he has his eyes set on Asia’s first pay-for-play league. “I need to talk to my agent to see what my next move is because I still need to finish some paperwork before I can make my way into the PBA,” he shared.

He then continued, “But that is definitely something I want to do.”

At the same time, the 23-year-old also isn’t counting out another go-round with Alab. “If it’s still in the works, hopefully, I can be back for another season with Alab,” he expressed.

Wherever he ends up taking his talents to next, Domingo is certain that he will be returning to his homeland. “Either way, I’m coming back to the PI (Philippines),” he said.

By Norman Lee Benjamin Riego ABS-CBN News

Pinoy contender hammers Mexican foe

By Truth Esguerra, Correspondent

LAS VEGAS -- Top Filipino boxing contender Mercito "NoMercy" Gesta defeated Gilberto Gonzalez during his comeback fight on April 1 at the Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas.

Gesta, who is coming from a 17 month layoff from boxing, was able to overcome a third round knockdown and pound his way to a victory over the heavy-handed Gonzalez.

The 29 year-old Cebu native pulverized the Mexican boxing contender with multiple punch combinations and slick boxing techniques throughout a majority of the fight.

Gesta was awarded the victory by the ring judges who scored the bout 96-93,99-91,and 98-92.

The rising Filipino boxing star, who is signed with Golden Boy Promotions, said he is looking forward to more fights in the near future.

"I'm back!" he said. "I can't wait to see what this year willunfold."

Gesta's record improves to 30 wins (16 KOs), 1loss, and 2 draws.

Fajardo takes home 4th All-Filipino Best Player award

June Mar Fajardo continues to etch his legend among the league’s greats.The ever-humble Cebuano giant rewrote the history books anew, winning his fifth Best Player of the Conference award on Friday.
The honor allowed Fajardo to tie the record set by Beermen great Danny Ildefonso, who also won five BPC awards in his 17-year career.

The 6-foot-10 big ma can’t help but be overwhelmed with the distinction he now shares with his mentor.
“Of course, I feel proud because I don’t expect that I can match him. I just feel really happy,” said Fajardo in Filipino.
Averaging 19.4 points, 15.2 rebounds, 2.4 blocks, 1.5 assists, Fajardo has once again stamped his class among the locals, winning his fourth BPC plum in an all-Filipino conference.
And after helping San Miguel reach the 2017 PBA Philippine Cup Finals, it’s all but a lock that the three-time PBA Most Valuable Player adds another hardware to his already loaded trophy collection.
Fajardo netted 1217 votes to nab the crown, besting fellow candidates GlobalPort’s Terrence Romeo, Alaska’s Calvin Abueva, and teammates Alex Cabagnot and Arwind Santos.
However, Fajardo’s goal remains the same: to help give San Miguel its third straight Philippine Cup and claim the Perpetual trophy.
“I’m thankful, but it’s better if all of us are happy so I really want to be a champion again.”

Romeo was at distant second in the BPC race with 711 votes, followed by Cabagnot (556 votes), Santos (381 votes), and Abueva (370 votes).

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