MANILA, Philippines – France point guard Tony Parker and team assistant coach Ruddy Nelhomme admitted that they are concerned about the Philippines use of the 3-point shot as a weapon ahead of their showdown.
“We know it is a big part of their arsenal and they are very good at it,” said Parker. “If the Filipinos get hot from the outside it will open up the lane for Andray Blatche and those quick point guards of theirs. So we have to guard against that.”
Nelhomme, a long-time assistant to France head coach Vincent Collet said that the French were able to take in Gilas’ match versus Turkey the other evening that ended up in a 84-76 win for “12 Dev Adam.” He said of the game that “the Philippines is fast and you cannot underestimate them.”
Parker described the Philippine team, which features FIBA Asia Mythical 5 mainstay Jayson Castro and explosive scorer Terrence Romeo, as “fast and talented.”
(READ: France’s Nicolas Batum to miss game vs Gilas)
The French, ranked in the world by FIBA, are in Manila after they lost to eventual champion Spain in the semi-finals of EuroBasket 2015.
The Philippines is also at this stage of qualification after losing to China in the gold medal match of the 2015 FIBA Asia Championships.
France and the Philippines, both bracketed in Group B of the FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament along with New Zealand, open the hostilities on Tuesday, July 5. Over in Group A, Canada, Senegal, and Turkey will also compete for one of the last 3 slots available to the 2016 Rio Olympics that opens this August 5. – Rappler.com
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