GILAS AWAITS UPDATE ON 2021 FIBA ASIA CUP’S FATE AS COVID-19 CASES SPIKE IN INDONESIA
Gilas is still on the right track of their training while waiting for the updates from FIBA leadership regarding the fate of the 2021 FIBA Asia Cup in Indonesia as the hosting country has recorded new single high COVID-19 cases.
“But at this point, we’re preparing as if it is all systems go. We are not slowing down on our preparations,” said SBP special assistant to the president Ryan Gregorio during a break in the PBA Philippine Cup games on Sunday.
“It’s a prestigious tournament that we are preparing for. A total of 16 of our Asian neighbors will be playing there and we’re not leaving anything to chance. As far as we are concerned, we have to prepare against formidable opponents and that we’re starting early.”
Indonesia’s hosting endangers the possibility of becoming the host as the country came across a spike of COVID-19 cases during the past weeks, the country recorded 54, 517 new cases last week, 47, 899 cases in July 13 only, which gives a 38,633 seven-day average.
Due to the alarming situation, Gilas like any other participating team and country are waiting whether there will be changes since Jakarta, Indonesia will host the FIBA Asia Men’s Championship.
“What we’re doing is observing the situation. We understand the surge and we’re just waiting for a directive from Fiba,” said Gregorio.
Nevertheless, in a hopeful prospect, SBP president Al Panlilio said that there is a scheduled meeting on Thursday among the FIBA members.
“We do have a FIBA Asia Mid-Term Congress tomorrow. I am sure it will [be] discussed,” Panlilio said.
The FIBA Asia Men’s Championship will begin starting August 17 and will end on August 29.
In the meantime, Gilas Pilipinas is in good hands as coach Tab Baldwin is guaranteed to steer the team.
“Yes, I’m confirming right now that coach Tab Baldwin will coach Gilas Pilipinas in the coming Asia Cup,” Gregorio uttered.
“The concepts of coach Tab Baldwin will be set in place again. Majority of the players inside already understand the system that were playing, and what we’re trying to do is still to try get better on those things and just continuously preparing for the next tournament,” he added.