MANILA, PHILIPPINES – Coach Tab Baldwin still hopes that the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas will still decide to send Gilas Pilipinas to 2016 FIBA Qualifying tournament despite of the SBP’s hesitation.
After making the Philippines as one of the Asia’s top basketball teams, and once again bags a silver medal in the recent 2015 FIBA Asia Championship, Baldwin still eyes for the near future of Gilas as he looks to continue to sharpen the team, and said that participating the qualifying tournament next year is part of the process, regardless of the result.
Baldwin admitted that the upcoming qualifying tournament is in a notch level, but will definitely benefit the program in setting it for larger tournaments in the future.
“Being there in the 2016 tournaments will help prepare for 2017. That’s why I’m hoping that we can participate there next year,’’ said Baldwin. “I don’t think you can get enough of really tough competition. You grow so much through adversity and the Olympic qualifier presents adversity,’’ in his statement with The Standard.
In previous statements, SBP President Manny Pangilinan and SBP executive Ricky Vargas are still unsure about the participation of Gilas Pilipinas in the qualifying tournament that would overlap the upcoming season of the Philippine Basketball Association, and said it is better to prepare for the upcoming 2017 FIBA Asia Championship.
“That’s just my hope and prayer that we can join. We’ll all gather to talk about that and the direction moving forward and make the best decisions,’’ Baldwin said.
European powerhouses France, Canada and Serbia are among those FIBA teams who will join the qualifying tournament next year.
Baldwin also admitted that he’ll be with the Philippines and he looks forward for the future of the Philippine National men’s basketball team with him as coach.