Cliff Hodge benefits from long break, ready to return from injury for Meralco
Cliff Hodge was already in uniform but didn't play during the Meralco Bolts' 102-91 win over the Blackwater Elite last Sunday. Jaime Campos

IF there's one positive coming out of Meralco's 17-day break in the PBA Commissioner's Cup, it's a healthy Cliff Hodge rejoining the team for the first time since the All-Star break.

The Fil-Am forward is expected to have fully recovered from the calf muscle injury that sidelined him for the last three games by the time the Bolts resume their campaign on May 3 against Phoenix.

Hodge suffered a grade 2 tear on his calf during Meralco's game against San Miguel.

"He should be ok by now and should be able to play when we come back," said coach Norman Black before the team embarked on a long three-week break.

Hodge was already in uniform during the Bolts' 102-91 win over Blackwater Elite last Sunday.

But being Easter Sunday, everybody was on vacation and the team couldn't find a doctor to give Hodge the green light to resume playing.

"I think he was probably capable of playing Sunday. The only problem, it was Holy Week so no doctors were available," said Black.

"Most doctors are on vacation, so we failed to get a a check and clearance the last time."

The Bolts went on a break carrying a 6-1 card and are almost a cinch to make the playoffs of an import-laden meet for the fifth straight conference.

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