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Japeth Aguilar set for return ‘at some point in the Finals’

Photo from PBA

Barangay Ginebra San Miguel anticipates the return of Japeth Aguilar when it takes on Meralco in a best-of-seven series for the PBA Governors’ Cup crown.

Coach Tim Cone, however, gave no timetable as to when Aguilar, who is dealing with an injured left calf, will suit up during the course of the Finals which starts Wednesday, April 6 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

“We expect Japeth to come in at some point in the Finals,” Cone said. “But we don’t know when.”

Aguilar hasn’t suited up since getting hurt in Game 1 of Ginebra’s semifinal series with NLEX last March 23 at the Mall of Asia Arena.

The athletic big man suffered the injury during the third quarter of the Gin Kings’ 95-86 after stepping on the foot of Road Warriors import Cam Clark.

He has since missed the next three games. but that hardly affected Ginebra as it beat NLEX, 3-1, to win the semifinal series.

Aguilar has produced 14.3 points, 6.0 rebounds and 1.3 blocks in 13 games this conference. He was one of the major reasons why Ginebra toppled twice-to-beat TNT in the quarters, posting a two-game average of 23.5 points, 7.0 rebounds and 1.5 blocks.

Meanwhile, Cone believes Aljon Mariano could finally return in time for the start of the series after missing the whole duration of the eliminations and playoffs because of an injured foot.

Mariano is considered by Cone as a key part of his rotation.

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