Shock loss to Taipei in 2013 gives Gilas Pilipinas hope for recovery

Paul Lintag on Dec 01, 2018 02:07 PM
Shock loss to Taipei in 2013 gives Gilas hope for recovery
Gilas' four-point loss has put a damper on the country's road to the FIBA World Cup in China next year. And much like the Taipei loss five years ago, key figures in the national team hope that Kazakhstan loss becomes a turning point.

MANILA, Philippines --- Gilas Pilipinas suffering a shocking upset at the MOA Arena actually has a precedent.

Five years ago in the 2013 FIBA-Asia Championships, the Philippines missed out on a Group A sweep after taking a five-point loss to Chinese-Taipei in an emotionally-charged game.

The Filipinos had a history of winning against Taipei but on that fateful night in August of 2013, Gilas Pilipinas took a rather disappointing loss.

Still, the Philippines would recover and actually win five straight games to qualify for the 2014 FIBA World Cup.

On Friday, the Philippines took another shocking upset at the MOA Arena, this time against Kazakhstan.

Gilas' four-point loss has put a damper on the country's road to the FIBA World Cup in China next year. And much like the Taipei loss five years ago, key figures in the national team hope that Kazakhstan loss becomes a turning point.

"Katulad ng sinabi ni Gabe [Norwood] kanina, last time na may painful loss national team natin dito [MOA Arena] was against Taipei [in FIBA-Asia 2013]," guard LA Tenorio said.

"After that what happened? It became our wake-up call, mas naging focused kami and we made it to the World Cup. It might be the same situation [now]," he added.

Tenorio was part of the 2013 Gilas team that won silver in the Asian Championships. He was also part of the 2014 team that competed in the World Cup.

LA is actually only making his return to the national team now four years later and he's hoping that Gilas realizes that one painful loss doesn't define the race to the World Cup.

The Philippines didn't exactly lose ground in these Asian Qualifiers but the team's margin for error just got slimmer.

Gilas can make a play for a top two spot in a couple of days actually, all they have to do to beat Iran in its final home game.

"Yun lang, we cannot afford [to lose]. Yung margin of error namin is lumiliit. But we still have a chance," Tenorio said.

"We can win at least 2 of 3 [of our last games] para World Cup ulit. We focus first on Monday then we'll see what's gonna happen sa next window," he added.

 


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