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Gilas Pilipinas, which will be re-launched late this month, has a scheduling problem pertaining to its participation in this year’s biggest tournaments.
As the SBP lays the groundwork for Gilas’ resurrection with the appointment of Chot Reyes as head coach, basketball chief Al Panlilio is deeply concerned with the holding of the FIBA Asia Cup (Asian championships) and the 29th Southeast Asian Games.
The FIBA Asia Cup is set Aug. 15-27 in a venue yet to be determined, while the SEAG in Kuala Lumpur is penciled for Aug. 19-31.
“These are two important events,” said Panlilio yesterday.
The SBP, according to Panlilio, will send a letter to the FIBA asking if the date of the Asian Cup can be pushed back or moved after the SEAG to allow the Philippines to send a team to the biennial sportsfest.
The FIBA Asia Cup will serve as a qualifying for the 2019 FIBA World Cup.
Although the Southeast Asian representative to the FIBA Asia Cup will only be determined after the Seaba championship in April, the Philippines is expected to romp over the opposition with the naming of a solid 24-man pool.
The Gilas Cadets make up the core of the team but the squad will soon be reinforced by stars from the PBA as the SBP is hell-bent in putting on a huge performance in the Asia Cup.
The SBP has a long-term goal that goes beyond 2019 and an impressive run by Gilas in the next two years is badly needed to keep its lofty goals afloat.
If the FIBA sticks to its schedule, the SBP will likely be compelled to form a team for the SEAG.