TNT draws first blood

first_imgWorld’s 50 Best Restaurants launches new drinking and dining guide Heart Evangelista admits she’s pregnant… with chicken MOST READ With a 1-0 lead after a 109-105 win on Saturday, Victolero wants his Hotshots to stay the course knowing that the Beermen will do everything to bounce back in their 7 p.m. clash at MoA Arena.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games What ‘missteps’? View comments Alcantara, pal sweep futures WATCH: Firefighters rescue baby seal found in parking garagecenter_img 1 dead in Cavite blast, fire PBA IMAGESTNT KaTropa maximized the advantage it has—a 6-foot-10 behemoth in Joshua Smith—and reversed all pre-series predictions that it was the underdog against Barangay Ginebra.Smith came off the bench and threw his weight around all night long, keying a 100-94 decision of the top-seeded Gin Kings as the Texters broke the ice in their best-of-five Final Four match-up in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup before a stunned pro-Ginebra crowd at Mall of Asia Arena on Sunday night.ADVERTISEMENT Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ Scoring at will and changing every Ginebra shot inside, Smith was the immovable force in the middle for the Texters that the Gin Kings didn’t have an answer to as TNT goes into Game 2 knowing that it put a dent on the psyche of the enemy—critical in a short series.“We hope that Joshua continues to play the same,” TNT coach Nash Racela, who was brilliant in drawing the game plan that had Smith scoring in the 30s for the second straight night. “But the locals will still be crucial.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutIt was clear that Racela would ride Smith all the way, as he managed his import’s minutes splendidly by, first, not starting him and then pulling him in and out of the floor to keep Smith fresh for the stretch.Smith, who came in as TNT’s third import here, finished with 35 points and 13 rebounds in less than 29 minutes. Heart Evangelista admits she’s pregnant… with chicken Cayetano dares Lacson, Drilon to take lie-detector test: Wala akong kinita sa SEA Games The locals backed Smith up with aplomb, with RR Pogoy shooting 17 and Ranidel de Ocampo firing 12. But the biggest shot among locals came from Jason Castro, who sealed the outcome with a triple with 12.2 seconds left for what turned out to be the final score.That was the only field goal for Asia’s best point guard, as he struggled to get into a rhythm all night but saved his only basket when it truly mattered.Justin Brownlee paced the Kings with 24 points, with LA Tenorio and Japeth Aguilar shooting 15 apiece.Game 2 is slated Tuesday night also at MoA Arena.Meawnhile, Chito Victolero has described Star’s Final Four with powerhouse San Miguel Beer in just one word: Grinding.ADVERTISEMENT LATEST STORIESlast_img read more

Lesser lights deliver for Gilas in rout of India

first_imgTAIPEI – In his warm up pants and a Gilas Pilipinas shirt, RR Pogoy was one interested man in a place he really doesn’t belong: inside the press room.ADVERTISEMENT After sitting out his first game in the Jones Cup Invitational, Pogoy went with Almond Vosotros and Von Pessumal and coach Chot Reyes for the interview, filming his teammates after a job well done that saw the Filipinos manhandle India, 101-70 on Saturday afternoon at Taipei Peace Basketball Hall here.Pessumal and Vosotros made not only Pogoy, but the entire team proud after shooting 14 points each and delivering when called upon for the first time.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool stars“I’m just so happy for them,” Pogoy said in Filipino while shooting Vosotros during the interview. “They both played very well.”Bitter rivals in the UAAP with La Salle and Ateneo, Vosotros and Pessumal made sure that Reyes wouldn’t miss Pogoy’s outside sniping after hitting four triples each in a combined 17 attempts that helped the Filipinos break away. View comments Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Church, environmentalists ask DENR to revoke ECC of Quezon province coal plant LATEST STORIES Tolomia played 25 minutes and finished with eight points and five assists, ably taking the place of Kiefer Ravena and Jio Jalalon as both played just a combined 21 minutes at the point.“We have very able players to step in.”It turned out that one of the reasons why Pogoy made his way to the press room was to find out whom between Pessumal and Vosotros was going to talk longer during the interview.Reyes himself bared that Pogoy won the bet, having put a wager on Pessumal.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next It was the fifth win in eight games for Gilas, which closes it out against Iran Sunday at 5 p.m., a game which Reyes said that team will be taking very seriously.“We wanted to give a lot of minutes to the guys (young players),” Reyes said. “One of our objectives for participating here was to prepare our SEAG (Southeast Asian Games lineup) and Von and Almond are integral parts of that lineup.”“We’re just thankful for the opportunity to play,” Pessumal, the former Eagle in the UAAP, said. “We knew our teammates were tired after seven straight games and we had the mindset of helping the team. We just stayed ready while waiting for the opportunity.”Mike Tolomia, Ed Daquioag and Fonzo Gotladera also saw major minutes, with Carl Cruz giving out his usual contributions. All of them will be in Kuala Lumpur eyeing the Philippines’ 18th gold medal in the biennial meet.“It was just a great testament to our players that they are ready despite not getting the minutes (in the past games),” Reyes said with pride. “That’s why we brought the kind of players we brought here – for depth.”ADVERTISEMENT National Coffee Research Development and Extension Center brews the 2nd National Coffee Education Congress Robredo should’ve resigned as drug czar after lack of trust issue – Panelocenter_img MOST READ Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ Trump strips away truth with hunky topless photo tweet Gilas Pilipinas whips India by 31 points FEU Auditorium’s 70th year celebrated with FEU Theater Guild’s ‘The Dreamweavers’ Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’last_img read more

Exeter Chiefs turn on the power to leapfrog Saracens as leaders

first_imgShare on Twitter Chiefs’ 10-6 interval lead was hardly imposing but in a tight, gritty contest it had real psychological value. Even with the giant Will Skelton on for Rhodes, the Chiefs duly exerted the majority of the pressure in the third quarter, with the sight of the lightly-built Steenson forcing Vunipola back in the tackle indicative of the hosts’ mindset.Even before Williams bagged another powerful try for his collection, Schalk Burger was sent to the sin-bin for illegally trying to prevent the Chiefs’ third score and Kvesic’s final flourish trumped Ben Spencer’s consolation effort, there was only one side in it.With the season due to reach its halfway point this coming weekend, it also underlined the scale of the task awaiting those hoping to nip in and deprive Chiefs of a fourth successive Twickenham final appearance. Even without the injured likes of Henry Slade, who should return for Friday’s trip to Northampton, Jack Nowell, Dave Ewers, Jonny Hill and Olly Woodburn, Exeter have scored more tries than any team in the league over the season’s first 10 games and conceded the fewest as well. “We weren’t faultless but we worked hard and we were pretty tough,” stressed Baxter, whose team have lost once to Saracens in their last five meetings. “It gives me real confidence that if we do what we do with real energy we’re a good side.” Rugby union The Observer Christmas comes around about as often as Saracens lose games of rugby nowadays but this was a seasonal stuffing in every respect. After 22 matches unbeaten in all competitions the Premiership champions were abruptly dragged back to earth by a fiercely motivated Chiefs side who, for now, sit three points above their main rivals at the top of the domestic tree.The foundations of Exeter’s best result of the season were again laid up front, with Saracens ultimately second best in areas they normally dominate. Luke Cowan-Dickie, promoted to start at the 11th hour, made a striking return at hooker opposite England’s Jamie George, Scotland’s Sam Skinner delivered another telling performance and the impact of Harry Williams and Ben Moon off the bench left Saracens with absolutely nowhere to go. Sign up to the Breakdown for the latest rugby union news Share via Email … we have a small favour to ask. More people, like you, are reading and supporting the Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we made the choice to keep our reporting open for all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford to pay. Whether we are up close or further away, the Guardian brings our readers a global perspective on the most critical issues of our lifetimes – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. We believe complex stories need context in order for us to truly understand them. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We hope you will consider supporting us today. We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism that’s open and independent. Every reader contribution, however big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Jonah Holmes helps Leicester defeat Harlequins to end losing run Saracens Since you’re here… match reports Share on WhatsApp Read morecenter_img Share on Pinterest The Breakdown: sign up and get our weekly rugby union email. Share on LinkedIn Topics Share on Facebook Reuse this content Support The Guardian Premiership Exeter Read more Share on Messenger Perhaps the most telling snapshot of the day came as Chiefs’ pack rampaged over for a close-range penalty try just as a weary Mako Vunipola and George were walking slowly towards the main stand having been replaced. The two Lions did not even need to glance over their shoulders with the raucous West Country cheers already telling them everything they needed to know.A last-minute converted score from a resurgent Matt Kvesic also earned the Chiefs a bonus point and put the tin lid on Saracens’ heaviest league defeat for 19 months. Exeter were also the last team to beat them in the Premiership last March and, having lost 27-10 to Saracens in last season’s final, will view this result as a positive omen for 2019. “At times we made Saracens look a bit ragged,” said the Chiefs’ director of rugby Rob Baxter. “If we play them again there are some areas where we think we can gain some momentum against them.”Saracens’ Mark McCall freely admitted his side – “We were well beaten in most areas” – were second best after a bright start, their downturn coinciding with the departure of their skipper Brad Barritt with concussion at the start of the second quarter. With Michael Rhodes also suffering a painful shoulder knock and both Maro Itoje and Billy Vunipola currently sidelined, the champions are starting to show some end-of-year signs of wear and tear.Exeter, despite two early Owen Farrell penalties, took full advantage, with Cowan-Dickie, only drafted in to start at short notice when the Chiefs’ captain Jack Yeandle withdrew because of illness, gleefully collecting the rebound after Skinner had charged down Ben Spencer’s clearance. Saracens’ early composure soon began to fray, with their wing Alex Lewington enduring a particularly torrid 40 minutes beneath the high ball, and their set-piece also started to creak. With Exeter, as ever, rejecting penalty shots in favour of kicks to the corner, however, there was no further scoring until Steenson finally slotted a penalty from in front of the posts in the final moments of the half.last_img read more