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Changing roles: FEU’s Tamsi embracing defensive role



Once considered as a spitfire guard prior to suiting up for the Far Eastern University Tamaraws, Francis Tamsi has now found his niche with the team by thriving in his role of being a pesky defender.

In their Finals rematch against the National University Bulldogs, Tamsi came up with the game’s crucial defensive stop, and the same time slamming the door shut for any NU miracle, after he intercepted Alfred’s Aroga’s pass to Paolo Javelona in the dying seconds of regulation.

Also, Tamsi finished yesterday’s game with 4 points, 2 assists, 2 steals and no turnovers in 20 minutes of playing time.

“Biglang na isip ko na lang na parang huminto na lang ako kasi nakikita si Aroga na ipapasa niya [ang bola] kay Javelona,” Tamsi said when asked about his late defensive play. “Parang ginarab ko ang opportunity na ma-steal ang bola.”

In addition, Tamsi would later on credit Nash Racela, FEU’s head coach, for molding him into the player that he is today. He added that he would just listen on what his coach wants him to do and he would always assure that he will go hard whenever his number is called.

Philippine Sports News - Tiebreaker Times Changing roles: FEU's Tamsi embracing defensive role    “Kung ano ang tinuturo ni coach at kung ano ang kulang sa team, iyon ang ibibigay ko at kapag pinapasok ako, go hard naman ako everytime,” Tamsi added. “Gusto ko kasi manalo. Kung gusto niya ng depensa, depensa lang ako. Kung gusto niya ng opensa, practice ko pa ang shooting ko para makatulong sa team.”

In a team surrounded with versatile wings and a plethora of shooters, a solid defensive stopper will always be welcome. Regardless of how lethal a team’s offense can be, it is still a team’s defensive effort that solidifies a win. Hopefully for the Tams, Tamsi’s defensive renaissance can be one of their defining revelations this season. Having a solid defensive stopper will always be key in keeping a team’s main guns fresh in the long run.

“That’s a role that Tamsi has really been embracing this season. He came to FEU as an offensive player. Noong sa probinsya gumagawa iyan ng 30 points and he never really knew how to play defense,” FEU coach Racela remarked. “Ngayon, magaling na siya sa depensa so that is his specific role doon sa team namin. And we’re really confident with him na pag nalibre siya, he could knock down shots.”

“NU was a really tough defensive team. We’ve been known for our offense the last three years. Isang bagay na [they] overlooked is our defense. Sabi namin, if they play good defense we could also play good defense. That’s the only way you could win. I think you would hear a lot of coaches say that.”