ALL eyes will be on PSL scoring record holder Gyselle Silva as Smart seeks to come up with a strong finish when it battles Sta. Lucia Realty in the classification phase of the Chooks to Go-Philippine Superliga Grand Prix on Thursday at the Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan.
Silva scored 56 in a loss to Cocolife on Saturday and focus will surely be on the Cuban spiker as Smart tries anew to stop the bleeding.
The Smart-Sta. Lucia match is set at 7 p.m. after the match between Cignal and Generika-Ayala at 4:15 p.m.
Reigning champion F2 Logistics has sealed the No. 1 spot with nine wins in 10 matches, while Petron is in second, followed by Cocolife (6-4) and Foton (5-5). The top four have twice-to-beat advantages in the quarterfinals.
Smart is set to face F2 Logistics while Generika-Ayala will tangle with Petron on Saturday at the Gen. Trias Sports Center in Cavite.
Cignal, which has a 3-6 win-loss card, still has a slight chance to improve its quarterfinal placing if it wins via straight sets over Generika-Ayala while hoping that Sta. Lucia (4-5) also suffers a straight sets loss to Smart in the other match.
Smart head coach Ronald Dulay said he wasn’t surprised with Silva’s explosive game, and believes the import is not done yet.
“Her main goal is to give us a victory,” said Dulay,
“I’m not discounting the possibility that she can either match or surpass that impressive performance in our next few matches.”
Sta. Lucia is coming off an impressive straight sets victory over erstwhile unbeaten Petron, giving it a boost in morale entering its final game of classifications.
“That win over Petron will be worthless if we will not work hard in our next game,” said Sta. Lucia coach George Pascua, who will again rely on Marisa Field, Bohdana Anisova, MJ Philips, Micmic Laborte and Kristen Moncks.
“The job is not yet done. We have to go back to the drawing board and plot how to stop Smart and its very good import in our next game.”