THE national men’s basketball team, or Gilas Pilipinas, starts gearing up for the Southeast Asian Basketball Association (SEABA) Championship with a three-day training camp in Tagaytay City starting today. The camp marks the first time that all 24 members of the pool—12 cadets and one from each of the 12 Philippine Basketball Association teams—are being assembled to select members of the squad that will play in the SEABA the country is hosting from May 12 to 18 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. The camp also ends a day before the PBA Commissioner’s Cup opens on Friday. Returning Head Coach Chot Reyes said the pool will be trimmed to 15 players days before day one of the SEABA tournament where the winner will represent the region in the Fiba Asia Cup in Beirut this August. “It is important for us to start this training camp as a foundation for everything we want to accomplish,” Reyes told an interview by TV5. “We want to build a real team together,” Reyes added. “During the camp, we also want to set our expectations and get everyone mentally attuned to the task.” Expected to be in Tagaytay City are cadets Mac Belo, Carl Bryan Cruz, Ed Daquioag, Russel Escoto, Kevin Ferrer, Pons Gotladera, Jio Jalalon, Mike Tolomia, Von Pessumal, Roger Pogoy, Arnold van Opstal and Matthew Wright. Completing the pool are Jayson Castro, Paul Lee, LA Revilla, Terrence Romeo, Jonathan Grey, Art de la Cruz, Norbert Torres, Calvin Abueva, Bradwyn Guinto, Raymond Almazan and Japeth Aguilar and June Mar Fajardo. Troy Rosario was a late addition to the camp.
By RAMON RAFAEL C. BONILLA | BUSINESSMIRROR