"Ginhinyero" Manuel excited to join "historic" Ginebra

Jett Manuel is the last pick of the first round. Dennis Acosta

By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA--Almost all of the mock drafts that surfaced over the weekend had Jett Manuel making the first round of the actual PBA Draft with that of Dugout Philippines pitting him at number nine.

However, Star, the owner of the ninth pick, eventually passed on Manuel in favor of Lervin Flores.

"I was nervous at what pick I'm gonna end up," Manuel told Dugout Philippines on Sunday after the draft. "We have all these projections, but you will see surprises the draft can have in store."

Luckily for the six-foot-two gunner, he still ended up in the first round but as the 12th overall pick--the last for the said round--by Ginebra, who just made history two nights back after clinching its 10th title in front of 54,086 people at the Philippine Arena in Bocaue.

"It's exciting to be [part of] one of the most historic franchises in the PBA," said Manuel. "I'm excited to be here, to learn, to get better, to contribute, and to win as much as I can."

Even the fans are excited to see him on the court that they even gave him, a licensed civil engineer who recently passed the licensure exam, a moniker: "ginhinyero".

On what he can bring to the Barangay, Manuel answered, "I'm gonna be that shooter that he (Coach Tim Cone) needs me to be. I'm gonna run the plays. I just wanna learn from him as much as I can."

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