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June Mar Fajardo is Gilas’ ‘cornerstone’, says Cone

by Niel Victor Masoy, October 02, 2019 7:23pm

Tim Cone has just stressed the value of June Mar Fajardo for the Philippine national basketball team.

The multi-titled coach said that the 6-foot-10 big man from Pinamungajan, Cebu is the cornerstone of Gilas Pilipinas.

“Obviously he’s a cornerstone of the national team, him and Jayson [Castro], so we need him on the team and we need him healthy, so we’re going to be patient with him,” remarked Cone on Monday after Gilas made their first practice in preparation for the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games at the Meralco Gym.

Of all the players included in the national team’s 15-man pool for the SEA Games basketball tourney, only Fajardo did not attend as he’s nursing an ankle injury and was attending to a personal matter as per Cone.

The bemedalled tactician, though, expects the reigning five-time Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Most Valuable Player (MVP) to join the Gilas’ second practice session on Thursday at the same venue.

“He has an ankle issue, so he would not have practiced on court with us, he would have been on the side with Chris [Standhardinger] and Marcio [Lassiter], but we’re hoping that [he gets healthy],” said Cone.

For context, Standhardinger and Lassiter attended Gilas’ first practice but did not hit the court as they were still recovering from respective injuries.

“June Mar has some personal issues to do tonight and couldn’t make it tonight, we expect him to show up on Thursday,” uttered Cone.

“As you know, we’re missing June Mar. Again, he’s one of those guys that can pick up stuff really fast.”

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