Mar 16, 2023

SMB welcomes back Romeo in lieu of injured Fajardo

JUNE Mar Fajardo out, Terrence Romeo in.

As San Miguel goes to the PBA Governors' Cup playoffs without its most potent weapon, the Beermen nonetheless fortified their arsenal after activating Romeo at the tail end of the elimination phase.

Romeo, the league's three-time scoring champion, finally suited up for the team in its 120-106 win over NLEX, though it's quite obvious he still hasn't fully recovered from a grade 2 hamstring strain that grounded him in the Beermen's first nine games of the tournament.

The 30-year-old guard went scoreless in his first game back as coach Jorge Gallent just tried to break in Romeo by playing him for just two minutes.

"I'm just happy he's back. Everybody's happy that Terrence is back," said the San Miguel coach. "I just hope he's fully recovered so that he can get his game back."

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Romeo, who previously also missed a part of the Commissioner's Cup due to a back injury, admitted he has yet to get his usual timing after being out of action for more than two months.

"Malayo pa talaga doon sa usual na laro ko. Pero slowly lang, unti-unti na iwo-workout ko siya," he said.

He describes the injury as tricky.

"May time na OK siya, and may time na mararamdaman mo na parang may kaunti pa," he said. "Pero unti-unti alng muna hanggang sa ma-kundisyon ulit."

The return of Romeo comes at a time when the 32-year-old Fajardo is sidelined by an MCL injury he suffered during San Miguel's campaign in the East Asia Super League (EASL) Champions Week in Japan.

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The six-time MVP is projected to be out for six to eight weeks, and is certain to miss the playoffs. (RG)