- The final 12-man lineup of Gilas Pilipinas for the FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament has been revealed
- LA Tenorio and Calvin Abueva did not make it to the final lineup
- Team manager Butch Antonio shared it wasn’t an easy decision
- “It’s just hard, but we really have to cut 14 to 12.” – Butch Antonio
The final 12-man roster of the Philippine National Basketball Team, popularly known as Gilas Pilipinas, for the upcoming FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Manila this July was revealed during a TV5 special on Sunday evening, June 26.
The players who made the cut are:
- Jayson Castro (TNT)
- Ranidel De Ocampo (TNT)
- June Mar Fajardo (San Miguel Beer)
- Marc Pingris (Star Hotshots)
- Japeth Aguilar (Barangay Ginebra)
- Terrence Romeo (GlobalPort)
- Troy Rosario (TNT)
- Ryan Reyes (TNT)
- Andray Blatche (GlobalPort)
- Gabe Norwood (Rain or Shine)
- Jeff Chan (Rain or Shine)
- Ray Parks
Gilas Pilipinas veteran LA Tenorio (Barangay Ginebra) and Calvin Abueva (Alaska) were the last two cuts made from the team.
Team manager Butch Antonio shared that the decision to cut Tenorio and Abueva from the team wasn’t easy.
ABS-CBN News quoted him as saying: “In any team or in any sport when you cut players, it’s always the hardest. It’s always difficult. But you have to give it to the guys.”
You can see they’ve given their dedication to the program. Everybody’s been talking about the hard work they put in. It’s remarkable. I hope all this pays dividends come the OQT.”
“You have to understand that we built relationships, not only in this trip but through the months we’ve been together,” he added.
He disclosed that what made the decision easier was the way Tenorio and Abueva took the decision.
“I’m very thankful to LA and Calvin. I think they will still be part of the team. It’s just hard, but we really have to cut 14 to 12,” he added.
A total of 18 teams will be joining the tournament and they have been divided into three groups.
The tournament will run from July 5 to 10 and only the winners of each of the groupings will qualify for the Rio Olympic Games.
Gilas Pilipinas, which flew out on June 10 for a nine-day intensive training camp in Greece and a four-team pocket tournament against Italy, China, and Canada in Bologna, Italy, is expected to come home to Manila on June 28.