SBP eyes June dry run for FIBA Olympic Qualifiers

OLYMPIC QUALIFIERS. The Philippines will have homecourt advantage as it tries to earn a spot in the Rio 2016 basketball tournament. Photo from FIBA.com

OLYMPIC QUALIFIERS. The Philippines will have homecourt advantage as it tries to earn a spot in the Rio 2016 basketball tournament. Photo from FIBA.

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MANILA, Philippines – Things are falling into place for the Local Organizing Committee for the FIBA Men's Basketball Olympic Qualifying Tournament set for July 5 to 10.

According to Bernie Atienza, domestic competitions manager of the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP), there are plans for one or two dry runs for the massive event. (SEE: 2016 FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Manila schedule)

"As per FIBA, we are supposed to have a dry run for the event – a dry run that involves every single person and committee participating in the games," said Atienza. "From the venue that is the Mall of Asia Arena, the official statisticians, television panel and crew, the media group, etc." 

"The initial plan is to hold it a day before, July 4, but there is a possibility that we will hold a couple of them on June 23 and 28 and July 1 between the Philippines and Turkey," he added.

Atienza said they want to ensure that "it's all smooth sailing" come tip-off on July 5.

He also said that should the June matches for the dry run push through, it could be some college teams, most likely from the UAAP, who will be tapped, as the NCAA season would already be underway.

"These matters will be very clear over the next few days."

The official basketballs for the Olympic Qualifying Tournament have arrived and they will be broken in during Gilas practice, according to the SBP official.

"We're going to see a flurry of activity as the countdown has begun." – Rappler.com