SEA Games: Gilas prepares to play minus Castro after TNT star’s injury
Paul Lintag on Oct 26, 2019 09:13 PM
“We got some bad news today. I think Jayson's gonna have to step away from the Gilas team. He's got a 4-6 week injury. He has to heal from what I've heard from the TNT staff,” Ginebra and Gilas head coach Tim Cone said Saturday. (Photo by Richard Esguerra)
It appears like Jayson Castro’s latest Gilas Pilipinas return could be over before it even truly started.
The TNT star is out for about a month following a muscle strain suffered Friday against NLEX in the 2019 PBA Governors’ Cup.
This untimely development not only affects TNT but it also has a major impact to the national teams preparations for the 2019 Southeast Asian Games.
Given Castro’s expected timeline, if he makes it back in four weeks, he’ll only have a couple of days to re-establish himself with Gilas Pilipinas.
“We got some bad news today. I think Jayson's gonna have to step away from the Gilas team. He's got a 4-6 week injury. He has to heal from what I've heard from the TNT staff,” Ginebra and Gilas head coach Tim Cone said Saturday.
“I don't see him being able to get ready in time to come and play. We're down to 14 guys,” he added.
Losing Castro, who came out from international retirement to reinforce Gilas in the SEA Games, is a huge development for the national team says Cone.
Not only is the Blur an effective weapon, but in a team full of veteran PBA stars, he’s one that commands respect among his teammates.
Perhaps more than his expected production, his leadership and overall presence will be the main things that Gilas will miss if he’s totally out now due to injury.
“Obviously losing a guy like Jayson is a huge, huge blow. But he was one of the guys I was really looking forward to coaching and relying on. Tough news,” coach Tim said.
“But tougher for him, having to come back from that. Down to 14, we'll make a decision later on whether we'll go back to 15 or stay at 14. We haven't made that decision yet,” he added.
Despite Castro’s injury, Cone says Gilas Pilipinas will re-evaluate and will carefully address Jayson’s situation with the national team.
“If he makes the minimum time, which means he'll come back ?November 26?, 27, that would be three days before the tournament starts. That's if he's healthy. He has to get in shape, he has to play. If he's five weeks, he's out. Six weeks, we're already done,” Cone said.
“It's basically a 4-6 week injury. But we'll talk to Dr. Canlas and hear what he has to say as well before we make a final ruling on whether we need to look for somebody else or consider playing without him,” he added.
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