GAME Two of the PBA Philippine Cup semifinals saw two players from Meralco fouling out after defending June Mar Fajardo for most of the match.
Bolts on defense on June Mar Fajardo
Raymar Jose and Kyle Pascual committed six fouls apiece for the Bolts, most of it due to guarding the PBA’s six-time MVP winner. Fajardo finished with 22 points and 17 rebounds but the Beermen lost in Game Two, 99-88.
“Sobrang hirap kasi June Mar Fajardo ‘yan eh,” said Jose. “Hindi ‘yan basta basta na isa lang. Dapat dalawa o triple pa kami diyan magbabantay para ma-limit namin siya.”
Raymond Almazan, Cliff Hodge, and Noy Baclao also took turns in guarding Fajardo with Almazan and Hodge also registering five fouls each in the contest.
Meralco coach Norman Black said players fouling out is a concern for his team moving forward as they want to be in full strength in trying to contain Fajardo.
“That’s a problem. That’s a big problem. He is just so big, strong, and talented and he is very difficult to stop,” said Black.
“It took about four or five of our guys to even be able to just battle with him. We just have to get out there and scrap. That’s all we can do at this point,” Black added.
Despite contributing a double-double in Game Two, Fajardo said it has also been a challenge to overcome the Meralco defense with their physicality.
“’Yung physical, expected naman na ‘yun kasi playoffs na. Pero maganda rin depensa nila. Credit sa Meralco,” said Fajardo.
Black said all his players can do is try their best in containing the production of Fajardo.
“I don’t have June Mar Fajardo. I wish I did. But I don’t. We just have to try to find a way to at least slow him down,” said Black.
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