Mono forges decider

first_imgMono’s 7-foot-5 pillar Samuel Deguara (top), denies Renaldo Balkman as Teerawat Chanthachon prepares to give help. —ABL PHOTOBANGKOK —Paul Zamar never imagined being in this moment more than a year ago when he signed for Mono Vampire.Hardly getting attention from PBA teams back home, the former University of the East stalwart found himself playing for the Thai powerhouse in a stadium in the outskirts of Bangkok with his team protecting a three-point cushion against a San Miguel Alab Pilipinas side looking to clinch the Asean Basketball League crown.ADVERTISEMENT P16.5-M worth of aid provided for Taal Volcano eruption victims — NDRRMC Truck driver killed in Davao del Sur road accident In fight vs corruption, Duterte now points to Ayala, MVP companies as ‘big fish’ LATEST STORIES Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award “Coming into the clutch, our team effort gave me the opportunity to make a play,” Zamar said. “We were right there trading blows [with Alab]. It was more of relief that I made it.”Even Alab coach Jimmy Alapag raved at Zamar’s basket, the impact of which was almost similar to the one that Ray Parks made over Zamar late in the Filipinos’ 99-93 win in Game 3.“That was a big shot similar to Ray’s the other night,” said Alapag, who was left to rue his team’s sloppiness that resulted in 26 turnovers.Still, Alapag feels they have achieved their mission in the Thai capital by getting a split and taking the series back home for what could be an explosive decider at Santa Rosa Multi-Purpose Sports Complex in Laguna on Wednesday night.Parks finished with 21 points, while Justin Brownlee and Renaldo Balkman had 18 points each for Alab, which played catchup for most of the game following a flat start that saw them commit 19 turnovers in the first half.ADVERTISEMENT Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Green group flags ‘overkill’ use of plastic banderitas in Manila Sto. Niño feast Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding Imports key to PSL Finals With the shot clock winding down, Zamar took two dribbles before knocking in a floater that sealed Mono’s 88-83 victory over Alab Monday night that sent the best-of-five Finals into a winner-take game.“I was not thinking that I was playing against the Philippines, because our season was on the line,” said the 30-year-old Zamar. “It was a relief that I made that shot especially because I was struggling the whole game.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSAfter winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folkSPORTSTim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crown“I didn’t look at it as redemption but as survival,” he went on.Our season was on the line. It wasn’t easy, and we had to find other ways to win.”The 5-foot-11 Zamar finished with 11 points on a mediocre 4-of-12 shooting, but his gutsy drive and that dagger floater gave Mono a lifeline in a series that has turned out to be a dogfight in the first four games. Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. ‘Stop romanticizing Pinoy resilience’ MOST READ Scientists seek rare species survivors amid Australia flames Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next View comments Jo Koy draws ire for cutting through Cebu City traffic with ‘wang-wang’last_img read more

Aston Villa 2-1 Leicester: Bacuna moment of magic downs Foxes in FA Cup

first_img1 Tim Sherwood received a boost for his task ahead as Aston Villa manager as he watched from the stands to see his new side beat Leicester City 2-1 to progress to the FA Cup quarter-finals.The former Tottenham boss was installed as successor to axed boss Paul Lambert this week, and this was a tie which proved he has a job on his hands to rescue the Villans from the clutches of Premier League relegation.It was a poor game which lacked any sense of attacking verve from either team until the late stages, and it took a moment of magic from Villa’s Leandro Bacuna to inject any sort of class into the proceedings.The Dutchman cut inside from the left to curl a wonderful strike beyond Mark Schwarzer and into the back of the net to give Villa what was a deserved 68th minute lead.The hosts seemed to have wrapped up the win with a second goal in quick succession, but Andreas Weimann’s finish at the back-post was ruled out for offside.Villa looked to have settled it after all when a Schwarzer blunder saw a tame Scott Sinclair effort trickle in on the stroke of the full-time whistle, and while Leicester pulled one back seconds later through a superb header from record signing Andrej Kramaric, it was too little too late to mount a late comeback.The game was mostly played in midfield as the sides struggled for control throughout and frequently exchanged possession, though the odd attack did result in some crucial saves from both goalkeepers.Shay Given’s magnificent fingertip stop from Matty James’ well-hit strike was the highlight of a drab first-half, while Schwarzer rushed out of goal to block a volley from an unmarked Christian Benteke.Foxes centre-back Marcin Wasilewski also went close from a corner, flicking on a header which just grazed the outside of the post, and Benteke had a goal rightly disallowed for offside in the first-half.With cameras picking up Sherwood leaving his seat some time before the half-time whistle, there were suggestions he was preparing a rousing team talk for his new side.And, whether true or not, the Villans certainly looked improved after the break, with an immediate attack resulting in Fabian Delph seeing his header loop up onto the roof of the net.Such was the lack of quality from both sides that spectators were perhaps sat in disbelief when Bacuna finally opened the scoring with a fine goal out of nothing, and the 23-year-old’s effort suddenly sparked the game to life.Villa, sensing they could add to their tally, ploughed forward and soon nabbed their second with help from Schwarzer, who got a hand to Sinclair’s low drive but couldn’t keep in under control, with the ball bouncing off the Australian and into the net.Leicester star Kramaric, who arrived at the club for £9million last month, mustered a moment of joy for travelling fans with a brilliant header in stoppage-time, rising high in the box to steer a magnificent effort past Given, but Schwarzer’s error proved pivotal as the Villans go marching on. Aston Villa’s Leandro Bacuna celebrates his goal against Leicester last_img read more