Foreign teams thankful for chance to showcase skills in NBTC

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Mar 05, 2016 03:30 PM
Foreign teams thankful for chance to showcase skills in NBTC
OUTSIDE INTERFERENCE. NBTC will be welcoming foreign teams to be compete in the tournament for the first time in its history.

From its inception eight years ago, the NBTC’s objective has always been providing a stage for young stars from all over the Philippines to shine.

In this light, the program has been organizing a nationwide tournament that gathers only the best high school teams and pits them against one another. While only one team is determined to be the best at the end of it all, the competition among them only makes each and every young talent better in the long run.

With standouts from Manila’s Kiefer Ravena to Cebu’s Jan Jaboneta already proving that the gap between the level of play in the National Capital Region and the other provinces is no longer that far off, the NBTC thought that it was only high time to include squads outside the country to enhance the competition.

As program director Eric Altamirano put it, “This year, we thought of including foreign teams since we wanted to expand the talent identification process.”

With the decision, Canada’s Durham Crossover Basketball and Thailand’s Trail International School will join 22 Filipino squads in the tournament to crown this year’s champion. Further expounding on it, fellow program director Alex Compton said, “This will increase the competitiveness of the tournament and expose our high school teams to better competition.”

As it turns out, the same sentiment is shared by the foreign teams. Hearing Durham Crossover coach Mike Cruz say it, “We are very thankful because we were given the chance to show our talents.”

Cruz’s crew is made up of Filipino-Canadians and competes in the North American Basketball Association. According to the mentor, he and his boys are nothing but eager to showcase their skills in the NBTC as they aren’t afforded that many opportunities to do so back home.

Player Ridge Ablang echoed his coach’s statement by saying, “It’s really a great opportunity for all of our players to play here.”

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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