By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña
After a sub-par 1-1 win-loss outing during the February window of the FIBA Asia Cup qualifiers, the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) was quick to get back on the drawing board and plotted their long-term plans for a busy 2022 playing schedule.
Part of it was sitting down with the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) commissioner Willie Marcial, their deputy commissioner Eric Castro, executive assistant Mich Flores, and technical official Junior Bengua.
Representing the entire SBP during the meeting were Gilas Men’s program director and head coach Chot Reyes and SBP deputy executive director Butch Antonio.
During their meeting, Reyes and Antonio laid out the entire 2022 playing schedule of the men’s basketball national team and are hoping to get support from the PBA by lending some of its players for the upcoming international tournaments.
Gilas Pilipinas will return to the big stage for the 2022 Southeast Asian Games in May, the Asia Cup in July, the Asian Games in September, and the third and fourth windows of the FIBA World Cup Asian qualifiers.
To kick off preparations for a stacked 2022 schedule, coach Reyes also passed his 30-man pool he wanted for the tournaments which will be up for approval by commissioner Marcial.
“Nilatag nila sa amin yung schedules kasama na run yung SEA Games at Asian Games pati yung FIBA Windows. Nilatag din niya yung wishlist niya, yung 30-man pool,” said Marcial.
Sources confirmed that the 30-man pool submitted was a mix of PBA and young superstars that coach Reyes hoped would best represent the country on the international stage.
However, commissioner Marcial said that the pool is still up for approval and will be taking several steps to be materialized.
“Kelangan ko pakita sa board yan at explain yung schedules. Ang proseso diyan is kailangan makausap muna yung players then yung teams bago. Mahabang process pa,” added Marcial.