MERALCO will not only miss the services of its main point guard but his back-up as well in the coming two weeks of the PBA Governors Cup.
Baser Amer and Mike Tolomia won’t be around for the Bolts beginning this week as the two form part of the Gilas cadets’ backcourt rotation in the coming 29th Southeast Asian Games in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
The two will be leaving for the Malaysian capital this Friday and will miss the Bolts’ game against the Phoenix Fuel Masters later that day at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Good thing, Meralco only has one game scheduled for the duration of the SEA Games, set August 18-30.
Still, the absence of the two will be felt against the rejigged Fuel Masters, especially with Meralco coming off a 100-94 loss to NLEX last Sunday, the team’s first in five outings in the tournament.
“Obviously, it’s gonna hurt us in our game against Phoenix,” admitted coach Norman Black.
Aside from the two playmakers, the Bolts are also without injured forward Cliff Hodge, who suffered a severe sprained ankle.
Another Meralco personnel will also be missed by Black as deputy Jimmy Alapag is also with the Gilas cadets team as part of Jong Uichico’s coaching staff.
But it is what it is.
“It’s for the country so we have to deal with it. A lot of the teams are sacrificing for the good of the national team and for the good of the country,” said Black, himself a former national coach and once part of the Gilas Pilipinas coaching staff.
“It’s something we have to do. We have to sacrifice for the good of the country. I’m very proud that we have two players in the national team in Baser Amer and Mike Tolomia.”
After the game against Phoenix, Meralco will have a three-week break and won’t return to action until September 6 against TnT Katropa.