Alaska, Mahindra leave for Dubai ahead of showdown

Alaska looks to go 4-0 in back-to-back games in Dubai this weekend. PBA (file photo)
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA--Alaska and Mahindra, two teams with contrasting fates two games into the PBA Philippine Cup, are set to leave for Dubai for their clash in the said emirate.

The Aces and the Enforcers will depart via a Singapore Airlines trip on Tuesday morning, while the league officials led by CEO Chito Salud will follow later in the night through an Emirates flight.

Alaska, looking for its third straight win, will battle Mahindra, which is still finding its first win after two failed attempts, at the Al-Wasl Stadium at midnight of Saturday (Philippine Time).

The Aces will actually play back-to-back matches in the said arena as they will face Barangay Ginebra San Miguel on Sunday also at 12 a.m. (Philippine Time).

Salud commended Alaska for its "sacrifice" to play two straight games in the same number of nights.

He said, “Nagpapasalamat tayo sa Alaska Aces sa pagpayag nilang maglaro ng back-to-back official games. Alam kong gagawin nila ito para sa ating mga kababayan sa UAE.”

Also to be expected is on whether Playing Coach Manny Pacquiao will insert himself in the game for Mahindra.

Ginebra, which also dropped two straight tiffs ahead of its Dubai game, will leave on Wednesday through another Singapore Airlines flight.

Commissioner Chito Narvasa will follow suit on Wednesday night, right after the doubleheader at the Mall of Asia Arena.

“It is one of our ways of saying thank you to these countrymen of ours who endure loneliness and at times, even hostile working conditions to be able to support their families back home and of course country through their remittances. Without fail, the PBA is always rewarded by the warmest reception one can receive pre, during, and post game. And Dubai ranks up there when it comes to the intensity of reception the PBA gets every time we go there,” Salud continued.