BANGKOK - San Miguel Alab Pilipinas and Mono Vampire Basketball Club shoot for a 2-1 lead in the Asean Basketball League (ABL) finals at the Stadium 29 here.
Gametime is set at 3:30 p.m. local time (4:30 p.m. Manila time).
The series moves to the Thailand capital for the next two games of the best-of-five affair with the homecourt advantage shifting to the Mono Vampire side following their 103-100 victory in Game 2 in Sta. Rosa, Laguna.
The battlecry is simple for San Miguel Alab Pilipinas coach Jimmy Alapag.
“Get one in Thailand,” said Alapag. “That’s our whole focus. Try to get one on Saturday and give ourselves an opportunity to bring it back home. Not looking anything further past Saturday,” said Alapag.
The biggest question mark for Saturday’s match is whether Justin Brownlee will play or not. Alab has been mum about the status of Brownlee after he suffered cramps in the second half of Game 2 on Sunday.
Mono Vampire coach Douglas Marty, however, expects Brownlee for the all-important Game 3 as his absence in Sunday’s Game 2 hurt Alab’s chances of taking a 2-0 lead in the series.
“I don’t know what happened to Brownlee. Hopefully, he’s not injured seriously. We don’t wish that on any opponent, but that was a factor too. He was out of the game and he is a key guy for them. They did a very good job without him on the court. I expect and hope that he is back in Game 3,” Marty said.
Marty cited how huge their victory is in Game 2.
“This team is so strong and you never want to go home down 0-2. That’s a big mountain to climb. We wouldn’t lose confidence or give up in anyway, but this was critical,” said Marty.
Mono’s 7-foot-5 import Samuel Deguara dominated Alab in the paint after he finished with 30 points and 20 rebounds in Game 2.
Alapag hopes Alab will be able to limit Deguara for Game 3.
“I thought they did a great job of finding him. And again, the tempo of the game was in their favor. We allowed him to establish himself in the paint. Everytime we did, he made us pay for it. So we just got to be better on Saturday,” said Alapag.