FIBA World Cup

From Serbia to China: Coach Djordevic has different opinion of Gilas Pilipinas

JR Isaga

This is AI generated summarization, which may have errors. For context, always refer to the full article.

From Serbia to China: Coach Djordevic has different opinion of Gilas Pilipinas

QUALITY TIME. China head coach Aleksandar 'Sasha' Djordevic directs a play in the 2023 FIBA World Cup


Former Serbia national team head coach Sasha Djordevic – who once assessed Gilas is 'missing quality' – softens his stance as China's mentor ahead of another PH World Cup match

MANILA, Philippines – Former Serbia national team head coach Aleksandar “Sasha” Djordevic will face a somewhat familiar foe in Gilas Pilipinas as the 2023 FIBA World Cup moves on to its classification phase.

This time, however, the Olympic medalist tactician – who last coached his homeland in 2019 – is handling a much less heralded China squad for the 2023 World Cup, and is fully aware of the stark difference of the two situations.

“It was a different World Cup. It’s not the same team and I’m now the coach of China, and we’re going to prepare our guys to front Philippines in the best way, like we try to do to help them be ready for the game. That’s the only thing I can do,” Djordevic said after China’s first win on Thursday, August 31.

“I’m focusing on my players. I’m focusing on getting them some freshness to recover their bodies, so that’s what we’re going to do tomorrow.”

Djordevic first drew the attention – ire, even – of Filipino fans after pointing out in 2019 that Gilas was “missing quality” in its program.

Back then, the former FIBA World Cup champion player handled a team bannered by future NBA MVP Nikola Jokic, all-around guard Bogdan Bogdanovic, and 7-foot-3 post monster Boban Marjanovic, who pushed the Serbians to a 126-67 shellacking of the Filipino side.

Djordevic has since softened his stance as a mentor of China, propping the Gilas program for two straight press conferences, the latest being Thursday night.

“We’ll think about our opponent who we respect a lot. We know it’s going to be a tough game in front of the home crowd. [We’ll] just go for it. Just go for it,” he continued.

“Obviously, it’s important to go towards a goal for the path [to] the Olympics. It depends also on the other teams what they do. So we just have to wait, but we’ll be ready to play at our best.”

China, led by naturalized star Kyle Anderson, will try to carry its breakthrough momentum in its final classification match on Saturday, September 2, against a struggling Gilas program – albeit not yet as horribly as 2019. –

Must Read

Kyle Anderson, China hit stride before Gilas duel

Kyle Anderson, China hit stride before Gilas duel

Add a comment

Sort by

There are no comments yet. Add your comment to start the conversation.

Summarize this article with AI

How does this make you feel?

Download the Rappler App!