MANILA -- Balanga Chooks will take part in the FIBA 3x3 Bucharest Challenger this weekend.
However, the team known in the domestic 3x3 ranks as the Bataan Risers will only field in three players as Alvin Pasaol was not cleared to play in the Romanian capital.
Pasaol, who has been Balanga Chooks's spark plug, faced some issues with his Romanian visa, making him unavailable for the tournament, a qualifier for the FIBA 3x3 World Tour Debrecen Masters.
"Sobrang lungkot kasi parang maiiwan ko yung mga teammates ko dahil sa (I am so sad because I might not be able to join my teams due to) visa problems," Pasaol rued after the team's final practice before flying for Bucharest on Thursday at Gold's Gym Sheridan Branch in Mandaluyong City.
Pasaol's absence means Karl Dehesa, Chris De Chavez, and Travis Franklin will have to play the full game in each of its two matches in the qualifying draw.
Balanga Chooks is grouped with Russia's Kochenevo and the United States's Colorado City in Pool B of the qualifying draw with the winner in the group heading to Pool D of the main tournament, where New York Harlem and Edmonton are waiting in the wings.
De Chavez, however, looks forward to grinding it out despite the added pressure brought about by his team going undermanned.
"I'm up to the challenge. When the light is on, I'm gonna show up. No pressure," vowed de Chavez. (PNA)