CJ Payawal set for FIBA 3x3 WT debut as he makes Manila Chooks roster for Manila Masters

The Manila Chooks pool may have finally chosen its "Final 4" for the Manila Masters. Ivan Saldajeno (file photo)
By Ivan Saldajeno

PASIG—CJ Payawal is formally making a jump to the 3x3 ranks as he cracks Manila Chooks' final four-man roster for the Chooks-to-Go FIBA 3x3 World Tour Manila Masters this weekend.

The former University of the East player will join veterans Mac Tallo, Dennis Santos, and Paul Desiderio in the Manila Chooks team that will defend its home floor when 11 more teams set sail for the Glorietta Activity Center in Makati for the Manila Masters.

Manila Chooks, seeded ninth in the 12-club field, finds itself in a tough Pool A that also consists of top-seeded Ub Huishan NE of Serbia and eighth-seeded Utsonomiya Brex EXE of Japan.

Pool B consists of Riga, Dusseldorf, and San Juan, Pool C has Amsterdam HiPro, Futian, and Tsukuba Alborada in it, and Pool D is made up of Sansar MMR Energy, Beijing, and Al Wakrah.

Manila Chooks and Ub open the tournament at 3 p.m. Saturday, barely an hour after the opening ceremonies.

Manila Chooks will finish its pool stage assignments against Utsonomiya at 7 p.m. with Ub and Utsonomiya locking horns at 5 p.m.

With a crucial year ongoing in the race to make the Paris Olympics, chief trainer Chico Lanete hopes that Manila Chooks would at least make the semifinals of the tournaments they will compete in.

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