Kouame, Paras lead young Gilas Pilipinas pool

Delfin Dioquino
Kouame, Paras lead young Gilas Pilipinas pool

FOR THE FUTURE. Angelo Kouame is expected to become the Philippines' next naturalized player.

Photo from UAAP

A group of young stars headlined by Angelo Kouame and Kobe Paras compose the 16-man Gilas Pilipinas pool for the second window of the FIBA Asia Cup 2021 Qualifiers

Angelo Kouame banners the 16-man pool for the second window of the FIBA Asia Cup 2021 Qualifiers as Gilas Pilipinas decided to go with a group composed mostly of amateur stars.

Kouame is expected to become the Philippines’ naturalized player of the future after his naturalization got endorsement from the Senate.

The 20-year-old from Ivory Coast will be joined by his former and current Ateneo teammates Mike and Matt Nieto, Isaac Go, Dwight Ramos, Dave Ildefonso, and Will Navarro.

Gilas Pilipinas also tapped the services of UP aces Kobe Paras, Jaydee Tungcab, and Juan and Javi Gomez de Liaño.

Completing the pool are special Gilas Pilipinas draftees Rey Suerte and Allyn Bulanadi, La Salle stalwart Justine Baltazar, and San Beda standouts Calvin Oftana and Kemark Cariño.

Go, Juan Gomez de Liaño, Matt Nieto, and Ramos already saw action in the qualifiers when they helped crush Indonesia in a 30-point rout in the first window in February.

The Philippines is set to face Thailand twice on November 26 and 30 in a bubble in Manama, Bahrain.

South Korea was supposed to tangle with the Philippines on November 28 but it pulled out due to virus concerns. – Rappler.com

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Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.