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Ailing Mark Caguioa content to play Ginebra cheerleader on the bench
Mark Caguioa played just eight minutes in Barangay Ginebra San Miguel’s victory on Friday over Barako Bull, and even that came as a surprise.
“I didn’t know I was gonna play today,” Caguioa told InterAksyon.com. “I didn’t practice the whole week. Siguro medyo nag-iisip rin yung mga coaches dahil medyo dikit yung score and kailangan rin namin itong panalo. Against Barako Bull, you can’t relax.”
Ginebra coach Ato Agustin said he tried to test Caguioa when he fielded in the veteran guard in the second quarter, before it became apparent that the player was in no shape to help the team.
“You know what, when I got in there, I was really tired,” said Caguioa, who was scoreless during his tenure on the court
Fortunately for the Gin Kings, they had enough weapons to turn back Barako Bull for an 85-79 victory.
“There was a time I kinda wanted to go,” said Caguioa. “Pero nung four minutes na lang, I felt na medyo mahirap na rin para sa akin. Good thing we got the win. Kinabahan nga rin ako nung si LA (Tenorio) nag-cramps.”
But despite being unable to help out on the court, Caguioa made sure he was able to contribute in other ways — even if it meant playing cheerleader.
“I always have an active participation either when I’m playing or sitting on the bench,” said Caguioa. “If I’m not scoring or they don’t put me in, walang tampo. Natutunan ko yan sa Ginebra. Pangit yung ganun kapag may nagtatampo it’s a bad vibes for the team.”
Caguioa said it’s part of the team’s culture to remain tight-knit.
“The reason why makikita mo sa mga players na dumaan sa Ginebra, makikita mo they really love this team. Minsan ayaw na nila umalis. We treat everyone as a family,” said Caguioa.
“With me here being one of the leaders, that’s how I wanted to be. That’s why kapag may nakita akong players na medyo nag-re-react dahil hindi naipasok, I tell them that’s OK. I want to be the example.”
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