Kings, Texters clash in crucial match tonight

The Philippine Star

Posted at Jun 24 2012 11:25 AM | Updated as of Jun 24 2012 07:25 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Barangay Ginebra clashes with Talk n Text while Powerade collides with Meralco today in crucial matches among four teams jockeying for position right behind the frontrunners heading to the homestretch of the PBA Governors Cup elimination round.

The Tigers and the Bolts square off at 4:15 p.m. then the Kings and the Tropang Texters fight it out at 6:30 p.m. in an explosive twinbill tipped to draw a huge crowd at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

The Kings, who have been on and off, are eyeing their first successive victories that can seal their entry into the six-team semifinals.

The Tigers, meanwhile, take their second shot at a semis berth after being stunned by the Air21 Express, 128-121, Friday at the Big Dome.

The Texters and the Bolts could be very dangerous while in hot pursuit of the pacesetters.

At press time, the Kings and the Tigers are tied with the Petron Blaze Boosters at third place with identical 4-3 win-loss cards. The Texters are breathing down their neck at 3-3 while the Bolts are tied with the Barako Bull Energy at seventh at 3-4.

These six teams are in a mad scramble for the four remaining slots in the next round. Already safe in the semis are Rain or Shine and B-Meg.

"We need consistency. We keep on running the plays right, and we'll be okay," said Ginebra top gun Mark Caguioa, confident they will eventually end their win-loss-win-loss showing in the tourney.

"Basically, we have to play hard," said Ginebra coach Siot Tanquingcen.

"We've been trying to survive on a game-to-game basis with our depleted lineup, and Sunday is no different," said Talk n Text mentor Chot Reyes.

The Texters come into the game riding the momentum of back-to-back victories they churned out after a 13-day respite.

"The long layoff gave us a chance to practice and it’s showing in our game. But it is still a long climb," said Reyes.

Likewise waging a chase is Meralco which guns for a third win in its last four outings versus Powerade.

Meanwhile, Rain or Shine firmed up its hold of the lead as it walloped Petron Blaze, 103-82, on a strong finish in their Phoenix Fuel-sponsored road game in Dumaguete last night.