THE most dominant team in the PBA this season aims to take its fine form to the Asian level when it competes in the 2019 Asia League Terrific 12 in Macau next month.
San Miguel coach Leo Austria said the Beermen are aiming for the crown in the fastest growing preseason tournament in the region.
“We want to win,” said Austria, looking forward to the team's first campaign in an international tournament. “Let’s see what will happen.”
The Beermen are fresh from their conquest of the Commissioner’s Cup after beating TNT in six games during the best-of-seven finals, a fitting follow-up to their success in the all-Filipino Philippine Cup.
While they are using the Macau joust as preparation for the Governors’ Cup where the Beermen will be gunning for a Grand Slam, Austria said San Miguel will not be in Macau for sight-seeing.
“Knowing the players, when they are abroad, ang dinadala dito, hindi San Miguel. Ang dinadala dito, kapwa Pilipino at ‘yung bandera ng Pilipinas,” said Austria.
The San Miguel coach said the marching orders of the company’s bosses is to beef up the roster, which they did when they recruited Columbian import Lester Prosper as the second reinforcement behind Governors’ Cup import Des Wells.
“They want to win. Our boss RSA [Ramon S. Ang] suggested to get another import, that’s why we have Prosper and I hope na ‘yung makakalaban namin, kaya naming talunin. Let’s see what we can do,” said Austria.
The 12 teams are divided into groups of four with the Beermen bracketed in Group B along with the Shenzhen Aviators of China and Ryukyu Golden Kings of Japan. The Beermen play the Aviators on September 17 before capping the group stage with a match against the Golden Kings on September 19.
The top team from each group advance to the the knockout semifinals, with the winners facing off in the one-game final.