Fajardo, Abueva, Ravena among initial names submitted for FIBA OQT
MANILA, Philippines – PBA stars June Mar Fajardo and Calvin Abueva, plus former two-time UAAP MVP Kiefer Ravena, were 3 of the 24 names initially submitted to FIBA for the Philippines’ roster for the upcoming Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Manila in July.
Gilas team manager Butch Antonio confirmed to Rappler on Saturday, May 7, that the 3 aforementioned players and 21 others were submitted to the governing basketball organization in the world, with the roster eventually to be trimmed down to 12 for the OQT.
Joining them are other Gilas mainstays like naturalized Filipino Andray Blatche, Japeth Aguilar, Jeff Chan, Paul Lee, Ranidel De Ocampo, Gabe Norwood, Marc Pingris, Terrence Romeo, Jayson Castro, Troy Rosario, LA Tenorio, Matt Ganuelas-Rosser, and Moala Tautuaa.
Gilas trainees included in the initial 24-man lineup are Kevin Ferrer, Russel Escoto, Roger Pogoy, Ray Parks, and Mac Belo.
Some new names like Greg Slaughter, Marcio Lassiter, and Ryan Reyes are also part of the 24-name submission.
Antonio did not specify the due date for the submission of the final 12-man roster, but mentioned it’s sometime in the last week of June, giving Gilas head coach Tab Baldwin enough time to properly asses who he wants representing the country in the Olympic Qualifier.
Joining the Philippines in the Manila OQT are Turkey, Senegal, and Canada (Group A). France and New Zealand are together wit the host country in Group B when the action kicks off at the Mall of Asia Arena.
The winner of the tourney will earn one of the 3 remaining slots for the men’s basketball tournament in the 2016 Rio Olympics. – Rappler.com