Sinulog Cup hoopla unfurls today
(The Freeman) - January 8, 2018 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — The expected long and winding road towards the revival of Cebu commercial basketball begins as the Cebu City Sinulog Cup 2018 Basketball Invitational gets underway today at the Cebu Coliseum.

A simple opening ceremony will usher in the mouth-watering double-header pitting the UC/M. Lhuillier against the Cebu Landmasters/Bogo at 4:30 pm, and the Marinerong Pilipino of the PBA D-League opposite the UV/SG-ARQ Builders at 6 pm.

Both UC/M. Lhuillier and UV/SG-ARQ will parade their mainstays that clashed for the championship in last year's Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation, Inc. (CESAFI) season.

But while UC/M. Lhuillier still has its 6-foot-8 Cameroonian reinforcement in Frederick Elombi, UV will play without its Liberian import  Bassieru Sackor who is on vacation in his native land.

Of the five-team field that includes the University of San Jose-Recoletos (USJ-R) Jaguars who will be beefed up by ex-pro Roger Yap and 6-foot-10 Cameroonian skyscraper Kingsley Ewenike, the Marinerong Pilipino is tipped as the heavy title favorite owing to its star-studded lineup powered by UAAP stars in Alvin Pasaol (UE), Vince Tolentino (Ateneo de Manila), and Abu Tratter (La Salle).

The Cebu Landmasters/Bogo cannot be underestimated though due to the presence of commercial veterans in Mark Ababon, Ferdinand Lusdoc and John Abad.

They will be backed up by ex-USC players Charles Pepito, William McAloney and Ian Ortega, Zachy Huang, on his semestral break from UST, and Barkely Eboña of FEU and a host of present Warriors in John Reel Saycon, Froilan Mangubat, Lucky Ecarma, Kent Cabanog and Julius Cadavis.

The contenders will play in a single round robin format, with the top two teams at the end of the elimination slugging it out for the title on January 13.

The champion will take home P70,000, while the second to fourth placers will receive P50,000, P30,000 and P20,000, respectively.

Tickets are priced at P10 (general admission), P20 (upperbox) and P30 (lowerbox). — EBV (FREEMAN)

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