Terrafirma just can’t seem to get rid of the injury bug.
The Dyip lost Bonbon Batiller during their PBA Philippine Cup clash against Converge Wednesday. This causes yet another concern for a team that has already been dealing with the absences of Ed Daquioag and Isaac Go.
Just in his first game back, the Letran product suffered an apparent right knee injury at the 10:26-mark of the second period. He attacked his way inside and suddenly fell on his own. Play then stopped nine seconds later.
Batiller saw action for only a total of two minutes and 28 seconds as he never returned to the game. Terrafirma eventually lost, 84-97.
There remains no update from the team with regards to the extent of Batiller’s injury. He, however, was able to walk on his own on the way out of the dugout shortly after the match at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay.
“May na-injury na naman ako, si Bonbon Batiller,” lamented head coach Johnedel Cardel. “Accident naman. Inaabot tayo ng malas sa injuries.”
As tough as the club’s predicament has been thus far, the veteran mentor isn’t offering excuses. Instead, he says that it’s all on the remaining bodies to step up and grab the opportunities the injured ones have left.
“Ganoon talaga. Either may injuries ako… Tatlo, apat diyan, still, maglalaro kami,” Cardel said. “I said to the players na this is your time, show up, step up. Dito kayo makikilala eh, kailangan tumulong tayo.”
“‘Yun ang lagi kong sinasabi sa kanila – be ready. ‘Pag hinugot ko sila, be ready to shoot and be ready to play defense. Siyempre mga bata ito, minsan pressure going sa game. Unang takbo pagod, second, kalaban mo mga beterano rin,” the seasoned bench tactician added.
“Sabi ko sa kanila, kailangan ‘pag maglalaro ka sa team mo, may puso ka saka tapang.”
It is also on the coaches themselves to develop the other guys in becoming capable contributors as they look for that breakthrough, Cardel said.
“We have to develop players na lang na pwede naming magamit, give them confidence para makatulong sa team para manalo,” he said.
“This Saturday, versus Blackwater maganda nilalaro nila, but we will try our best na makuha namin ‘yung unang panalo namin sa Sabado.”
The second game of each gameday is also live-streamed on SMART Sports.