FIBA: “May chance tayo diyan,” coach Chot on Gilas’ World Cup campaign

Paul Lintag on Mar 21, 2019 01:52 PM
“May chance tayo diyan,” Chot on Gilas’ World Cup stint
“To be honest, [I’m] very optimistic about our chances,” Reyes said during a rare PBA appearance Wednesday at the Big Dome.

Say what you will about him but if there’s one coach who knows what it takes to find some success in the uber-competitive FIBA World Cup, it’s Chot Reyes.

Coach Chot was the one in charge when Gilas Pilipinas gave an inspired performance in the 2014 World Championships in Spain.

And while he’s since stepped down as head coach of the national team, he was still in charge of Gilas for half of the 2019 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers, leading the Philippines to a 4-2 record.

The Philippines, this time led by Yeng Guiao, will compete in the 2019 FIBA World Cup in China this year and the goal is to have a better finish from five years ago.

Reyes believes the 2019 Gilas World Cup team can do just that.

“To be honest, [I’m] very optimistic about our chances,” Reyes said during a rare PBA appearance Wednesday at the Big Dome.

“I think Angola is [beatable]... first of all, all the teams are tough. But at least there’s only one top-10 team in our group. Kasi sa 2014, there were three top-10 [level] teams in our group and nasabayan natin lahat,” he added.

Playing in Foshan later this year, the Philippines, ranked 31st in the world, is grouped with Serbia (no. 4), Italy (no. 13), and Angola (no. 39).

In 2014 in Seville, Gilas had to deal with the likes of Argentina, Croatia, and Greece. The Philippines lost to Argentina by four and dropped an overtime decision against Croatia.

Gilas’ worst loss in the 2014 World Cup was a 12-point beating to the Greeks.

For the 2019 World Championships, Reyes admits that beating Serbia will be tough but he also says Gilas has a chance against Italy and Angola.

“Angola, although they’re a very strong team, I think Angola is beatable the way we weer able to defeat Senegal before,” he said.

“Italy will be tough, but I don’t think they’re as strong as Argentina or Greece. I think may chance tayo diyan. Serbia admittedly, will be very tough. If Italy is tough, Serbia is very very tough. Parang Croatia naman yan dati sa atin. But then 'yung Croatia we took them to overtime. Di mo talaga masasabi eh,” coach Chot added.

 

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