SUPER 8: Alapag still has Gilas' best interest in mind
Paul Lintag on Jul 19, 2018 06:47 PM
On Thursday (July 19) in Macau, Alapag gave his thoughts on the suspension FIBA handed out to the Philippines for the ugly Gilas-Boomers brawl three weeks ago. FIBA released the official ruling just hours prior.
MACAU --- Whatever happens, Jimmy Alapag has Gilas Pilipinas' best interest in mind.
The former national team captain and current Alab Pilipinas head coach is in Macau to conduct a coaching clinic in the Summer Super 8 tournament organized by Asia League.
On Thursday, Alapag gave his thoughts on the suspension FIBA handed out to the Philippines for the ugly Gilas-Boomers brawl three weeks ago. FIBA released the official ruling just hours prior.
In a short talk with Philippine media, Alapag says the incident is just something Pinoys can learn from so hopefully, it doesn't happen again in the future.
"At the end of the day, you don't want to see anything like that happen for us and Australia because at the end of the day, we’re pros, we’re national athletes," Alapag said.
"But again, it's done. It's something you learn from and grow from. Hopefully, it doesn't happen again and for us, our focus now is how we can prepare for the next window coming in September," he added.
Former national team captain and current Alab Pilipinas head coach Jimmy Alapag on FIBA's decision to suspend players and coaches from Gilas Pilipinas following the brawl with Australia #Super8 #FIBAWC | @abscbnsports pic.twitter.com/lQco0ME9VP— Paul Kennedy Lintag (@paullintag8) July 19, 2018
The Philippines will open the second round in two months against Iran and Qatar. Gilas' home game will be played on closed doors as part of the country's punishment from FIBA.
With 10 players suspended, including star guard Jayson Castro and naturalized center Andray Blatche, Jimmy is still confident of Gilas' chances.
Alapag adds that the Philippines can afford to dig through its deep talent pool of players who have joined the Gilas program but hasn't necessarily served the senior team just yet.
"You know I think one advantages of the Gilas pool is that even despite the situation, hopefully there's still be guys available to play in the next FIBA window," Alapag said.
"It's unfortunate with the suspensions, but hopefully it's something we can learn and grow from and we’ll still be able to put up a competitive team. Obviously, there’s still a lot of great talent that we have in our country," he added.
While he maintains a positive outlook, Alapag is also realistic.
With Gilas' core practically decimated, the national team will have its work cut out for them as the road to the 2019 FIBA World Cup continues.
"For sure, it will be a challenge. Missing some of our top guys but again, its a great opportunity for the guys who have been part of the pool that may not have necessarily played in a tournament as of yet," Alapag said.
"There’s nothing like a chance to play for the country, especially in a FIBA event. So it will just be up to the staff to figure out who is still available for the pool and get together to play in September," he added.
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