MANILA, Philippines – Chot Reyes can only hope that the flak he continues to receive as Gilas Pilipinas’ coach will not be in vain.
Reyes said he remains focused on building for the FIBA World Cup next year even as fans continue to call for his head after the Philippines’ disappointing FIBA Asia Cup campaign.
The country failed to reach the Asia Cup quarterfinals for the first time in 15 years after a 102-81 loss to Japan in their knockout playoff on Tuesday, July 19.
“I’m just trying my best to keep my eyes on the big picture and hopefully, all of these things, there is a meaning behind. Hopefully, there is purpose in this pain,” Reyes told PlayItRight TV.
“Just continue to choose faith over fear.”
The subject of intense scrutiny, Reyes intentionally steered clear of social media to avoid reading unflattering comments.
But the 58-year-old admitted the public sentiment also takes its toll on him.
“I’m logged off Twitter, off Facebook, so I do not see it, I do not read it. But of course, I know because the people around me, they’re unfortunately the ones getting the brunt of it,” said Reyes.
“I’d be lying if I say it is not affecting me personally. But the way I look at it, my attitude towards it is that when I accepted the job, I knew this is part of the territory.”
More than five months since the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) handed him the coaching reins, Reyes said he will carry on with his job despite calls for him to resign from his post.
Reyes and Gilas Pilipinas will return to training on August 15 for the fourth window of the FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers, where they will be reinforced by Filipino-American NBA player Jordan Clarkson.
“As long as we have the support of SBP management and the leadership behind the program, then we’re just going to continue doing our job,” Reyes said. – Rappler.com