Jeb Garganera & Gabriel Segura ||
Gilas Pilipinas rides high on a wave after defeating Thailand once more in the FIBA Asia Cup Qualifiers 2021 last November 30, 2020. After an initial matchup which ended decisively for Gilas at 93-61, they maintain a crushing momentum with a score of 93-69.
Regarding the team composition of Gilas consisting of rookies, Coach Jong Uichico said,
“It’s a welcome challenge, we’re trying the best we can in getting them ready for the international game,”
and added that they needed
“more teaching, but not too complicated.”
Despite being newcomers, Gilas’ first game saw a number of impressive plays; Kobe Paras makes an offhand slam dunk while Justine Baltazar makes precise 2-pointers in a close 1st quarter, however, they sprang into action in the 2nd quarter, with Juan Gomez De Liano, Isaac Go, and the top performer of the game, Dwight Ramos, making 3-pointers, and closing with a 24-point lead.
Sweeping Thailand further with the same aggression of the last game, Gilas maintained momentum despite the Thais’ increased efforts; a killer synergy was seen between the Gomez De Liano brothers with alternating passes culminating in corner shots and slam dunks. Currently, that gives Gilas a standing of 3-0 including a game earlier this year versus Indonesia, with a score of 100-70.
With these victories, the rookies have secured a spot in the roster for the next FIBA window, happening in February 18, 2021, their next match versus Indonesia.