MANILA – Cignal knows it will not be easy even against a skidding Perpetual-Kinto Tyres in the semifinal round of the Spikers’ Turf Invitational Conference at PhilSports Arena in Pasig City on Monday.
Cignal has the manpower and experience but coach Dexter Clamor knows the challenges they would face against Perpetual, handled by his former mentor, Sammy Acaylar.
“Paghahandaan namin ang Perpetual. I know Perpetual lalo na si coach Sammy na mentor ko. I know how strong they are and kung paano sila mag-prepare for us din kasi kilalang-kilala ko na ‘yan at mga players nila (We will prepare for Perpetual. I know Perpetual, especially coach Sammy who is my mentor. I know how strong they are and how they prepare for us too because I know their players too well)," Clamor said in an interview on Sunday.
The HD Spikers (2-0) and the Altas, who are hoping to snap a two-game slump, collide at 3:30 p.m.
National University (NU) - Sta. Elena (2-1) and Japanese guest team Maruichi Hyogo (0-2) will square off at 5:30 p.m.
Acaylar said Perpetual will be ready.
"Well, it's going to be a tough game, and we know that Cignal is a club team and they have stars and superstars. But of course, we will fight until the end. This is a good exposure on our part in preparation for the NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association) Season 99 in April next year," Acaylar said.
Cignal beat NU and Maruichi Hyogo to take the solo lead in the five-team semifinal phase of the season-ending conference organized by Sports Vision.
Leading the HD Spikers are Joshua Umandal, John Paul Bugaoan and Wendel Miguel, while the Altas will rely on NCAA Season 98 and Finals Most Valuable Player Louie Ramirez, Jefferson Marapoc and Michael Medalla.
NU, tied for second place with Saints and Lattes - Letran at 2-1, will be bannered by Angelo Almendras, Jade Alex Desquitado and Leo Ordiales.
Spearheading Maruichi Hyogo are Yuji Kawagoe, Hinata Kuroda and Keitaro Iwakura. (PNA)