Out to retain their solid form, the Meralco Bolts will have to adjust playing minus Asian reinforcement Mohammed Jamshidi when they clash with winless GlobalPort Batang Pier on Sunday in the Mall of Asia Arena.
“We will be playing with Allen Durham and the rest of the locals,” said Meralco head coach Norman Black to FOX Sports in a phone interview.
Black bared that the 6-foot-3 Iranian wingman had to abruptly fly back to his home country last Friday due to a personal reason, something the veteran coach chose not to discuss.
While certain that he will be out in their game against Batang Pier, Black will wait if Jamshidi will return and continue playing for the rest of the Governors’ Cup.
Playing the first 5 games for Meralco, the 25-year old Iran national team member averaged 5.2 points, 2.6 rebounds and 2.6 assists in 16 minutes, with his best game coming off their loss to TNT where he scored 10 points.
But while they grope for form to adjust in their Asian import’s sudden absence, Black is also keen on grounding GlobalPorts’ lethal guard duo of Terrence Romeo and Stanley Pringle to claim their 4th win.
“Obviously you have to defend against their starting guards who can score 40 points. We have to slow them down and stop them down,” said Black, whose wards are coming off an impressive conquest of Rain or Shine last Wednesday.
The Batang Pier, on the other hand, will be looking to end their struggle after having a 13-day layoff.
Buried deep in the standings with zero win in 4 games, Romeo, Pringle and import Mike Glover will try to find a way to get their campaign going or else, they will be close to an early exit this conference. – By Jason Mercene
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