FIBA World Cup

No free pass: Baldwin wants Gilas to earn World Cup spot

JR Isaga
No free pass: Baldwin wants Gilas to earn World Cup spot

NO EXCUSES. Tab Baldwin wants Gilas Pilipinas to cultivate a winning mentality heading into the World Cup.

FIBA

‘You have to be prepared to go out on the court and play as if it's an elimination game,’ says Gilas coach Tab Baldwin even as the Philippines holds a sure spot as World Cup host

The red carpet has been laid out for Gilas Pilipinas in the upcoming 2023 FIBA World Cup.

With the Philippines serving as one of the three hosts for the quadrennial basketball spectacle, the national team is already guaranteed a spot no matter what happens in the lengthy Asian qualifiers happening across 2021 to 2023.

However, Gilas head coach Tab Baldwin knows that not much good comes from free passes in the sports world, and he wants his men to earn the lofty spot handed to them.

“There’s a lot of facets in building a successful basketball team, the winning mentality is one of those,” he said after the draw where Gilas was slotted in with New Zealand, South Korea, and India.

“You have to be prepared to go out on the court and play as if it’s an elimination game. There is no tomorrow and that’s how you build that winning mentality with your players.”

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Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) official Ryan Gregorio echoed these exact sentiments regarding Gilas’ unique predicament heading to the World Cup.

“It doesn’t change anything. We’re still going to prepare as if there’s a slot that we’re fighting for. I think coach Tab could attest to this, that we’re really going for the win because you want to develop that winning attitude,” he said.

“We don’t want to come in there knowing that we’re already in. We’re not going to slack off a little bit.”

Fans and players from the collegiate, professional, and international level already know that Baldwin will not accept anything less than full effort from his players no matter what the stakes are.

The stage may be set for the Gilas stars, but they have a long way to go before they can even take one step into the limelight. – Rappler.com

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