As its brothers and sisters in Team Philippines frolic in the ongoing Southeast Asian Games on home ground, Gilas Pilipinas jumps in on the action Wednesday night, poised to play true to its reputation and romp off with the country’s 13th consecutive men’s basketball crown in a week’s time.
The highly-favored squad coached by Tim Cone sets off its golden bid against Singapore at 8:15 p.m. before an expected full-house of supporters at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Cone has assembled a high-powered cast led by the PBA’s five-time MVP June Mar Fajardo, FIBA World Cup campaigners Troy Rosario, Japeth Aguilar and Kiefer Ravena, and veteran LA Tenorio as they seek to capture the gold closest to the hearts of basketball-crazy Filipinos and contribute to the Philippine delegation’s quest for the overall title.
The two-time grand slam champion coach said the team has prepared as much as it can under the circumstances.
“For the (short) time that we have had, we feel we have the guys, not exactly where we want them, but where we need them to be,” said Cone.
After the Singaporeans, Gilas takes on Vietnam and Myanmar back-to-back nights on Dec. 6 and 7 and is tipped to be in play for the medal rounds.