Rough-edged Gilas needs more polish for World Cup, says Guiao
MANILA, Philippines – Yeng Guiao said Gilas Pilipinas still needs some fine-tuning if it wants to compete at a high level in the FIBA World Cup even after beating the Adelaide 36ers in a tune-up game.
The Philippine crew squandered a nine-point lead in the first half before grinding it out down the stretch to pull off a 92-83 victory over the visiting Australian squad on Friday, August 23.
"Our bigs are not that quick. We should find a way to keep up with their bigs who can run, who are quick," the outspoken mentor told reporters in a mix of Filipino and English after the game.
Guiao added there is a need for June Mar Fajardo, Roger Pogoy, and Troy Rosario to acclimate themselves to the team with the global hoops tilt coming off the wraps on August 31.
The trio had been away from Gilas for nearly 3 weeks and missed the training camp in Spain as they saw action in the PBA Finals and only rejoined the team in practice last Tuesday, August 20.
While the triumvirate are all shoo-ins in the final 12-man lineup, Fajardo and Rosario struggled against Adelaide with 4 and 0 points, respectively, in limited minutes.
Pogoy, on the other hand, caught fire late by scoring 8 of his 10 points in the final 6 minutes to power a 10-0 run the Filipinos used to clinch the win.
"We can still get smoother, more fluid. When we were in Spain and they were together for a long time, I saw that we were moving better as a team," Guiao said.
"When June Mar, Pogs, and Troy were there, they were still feeling each other out. That is one thing we need to fix in the next few days," Guiao said.
Gilas will face the 36ers for the second and last time on Sunday, August 25, before mapping out their final plans for the World Cup. – Rappler.com