ANTIPOLO – Vic Manuel typified Alaska’s frustrations as he found himself on the wrong end of back-to-back crucial plays in the Aces’ 101-92 defeat at the hands of Star in their PBA Governors’ Cup matchup.
The Aces stalwart was the one defending Malcolm Hill in the two plays – the first with JVee Casio – when the Hotshots import buried successive pull-up jumpers that gave his team a 99-91 cushion with a little over a minute left.
“Magaling din yung import nila,” Manuel said, adding he’s still recovering from a meniscus injury. “Tsaka ayun nga, hindi pa ako one-hundred percent. Yung left leg ko, naiiwan talaga pag sa depensa, parang ang hirap gumalawa ba, kasi naiilang pa ako talaga eh.”
And Manuel pointed to his and the rest of the Aces’ aches and pains that has factored in the team’s 11-game losing streak.
“Kasi yung ibang players hindi pa fit, galing sa injury, so hindi nabubuo sa practice,” the Aces star forward said. “Kahit ako, hindi pa rin ako fit, pero talagang gusto ko rin makabalik sa form eh. Medyo nakakainis nga kasi hindi ko malaro yung gusto kong laro.”
“Nag-iistruggle yung team namin ngayon tapos ang hirap kunin ng panalo, so kailangan talaga mag-jell uli yung team namin, maibalik namin yung dati,” he added.
And once the Aces break that losing spell, Manuel believes it will restore order to what has been an uncharacteristic run of poor form for the perennial contenders.
“Siguro kung makuha namin yung panalo ulit, baka sakaling magtuloy-tuloy na,” Manuel said. “Ganun naman kami dati pa eh.”