By HENRY MORABANG
The Moniplus Tamaraws will meet KSS Flames in the PNG Men’s Basketball League (PMBL) final series for the third consecutive season this weekend.
The first game of the best of three series is on Sunday at Taurama Aquatic Indoor Complex.
The defending premiers, Flames, have the upper hand having beaten Tamaraws three times in a row and are looking for a fourth title.
Tamaraws won the inaugural premiership when PMBL first started back in 2013/2014.
The Flames, a Kutubu Security Services-sponsored team will have no problem but their only worry is whether the recent hectic weeks of basketball will affect their stamina.
“Fatigue may creep in; most of the team was part of the PNG team that won gold in the inaugural Melanesia Cup,” Tamaraws coach Ferdinard Daroya said.
“They (Flames) will be without Gabriel Elavo who was unlucky missing out on the game after an injury in the lead up games to the Melanesian Basketball Cup and earlier last month, they also flew to Solomon Islands for a tour there. That is a lot of basketball in the space of four to five weeks.”
Daroya is wary of playing a squad made up of PNG reps with Dia, Apia, Purari, Cornellius Muri Charles Parapa, Moses Lune and Gabriel Elavo who are fresh from winning the gold medal.
“It would be a tough assignment for my boys,” Daroya said.
“This is also the fourth time that we will meet Flames in the grand finals and we lost the last three. Tamaraws won the inaugural season but lost to Exodus in the second season.
“Then we played Flames in the third and fourth seasons. We are now in the sixth season.”
Tamaraws have only James Banduru and Robert Kave who are part of the PNG team.