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D-L semis today

Games Today (Ynares Arena, Pasig City)
2 p.m. – Cebuana Lhuillier vs NLEX
4 p.m. – Jumbo Plastic vs Blackwater Sports.

Defending champion Blackwater Sports and powerhouse NLEX look headed for another title showdown in the PBA D-League Foundation Cup.

The only two champions the league has had in its four years of existence are two wins away from making the “Dream Finale” happen. But it certainly won’t come easy against the Cebuana Lhuillier Gems and Jumbo Plastic Giants, both motivated by hunger and desire to win a championship.

The top-seeded Road Warriors open the best-of-three series against the fourth-seed Gems 2 p.m while the No.3 Elite face the No.2 Giants at 4 o’clock at the Ynares Arena in Pasig City.

This marks the second meeting between NLEX and Cebuana Lhuillier in a playoff series. The first time these two teams met, the Road Warriors swept the Gems to win the inaugural championship of this same tournament in 2011.

“(Cebuana) is a strong team with many talented players. They will be a tough opponent,” Fernandez said.

NLEX defeated Cebuana Lhuillier, 76-68, in the elimination round.

The Road Warriors, who earned an outright semifinal berth, have not played since their 70-58 blowout win against Big Chill in the eliminations May 8 raising concern from their coach.

“I’m a little worried the long break might have gotten us rusty. But no ifs or buts, we’ll be ready for Game 1. We believe our defense – individually and as a team – will be an important factor in the series,” Fernandez said.

Cebuana Lhuillier coach Boyzie Zamar readily admitted that they are the underdog in the series but promise to give the Road Warriors a good fight.