ALAB Pilipinas is planning to play in several international competitions, hoping to be eligible for the Jones Cup in Taiwan and looking to add the Super Kung Sheung Cup in Hong Kong in its calendar, before the next Asean Basketball League season.
Among the tournaments Alab is eyeing are the Merlion Cup in Singapore, Seri Mutiara Champions Cup in Malaysia, and the Kadayawan Cup in Davao.
ABL chief operations officer Jericho Ilagan said Alab Pilipinas may also try to participate in events outside Southeast Asia, with the Hawaii Cup and a Guam invitational on top of their wish list.
“Parang (Jones Cup) they are switching from a club invitational to a national team invitational. Baka this year, because of the Fiba Asia, most probably, national team. We are also awaiting word from the Hong Kong Basketball Association if ’yung Super Kung Sheung Cup, imo-move nila earlier kasi hindi naging maganda ang participation this year kasi after the holidays,” said Ilagan.
In its first season in the ABL, Alab Pilipinas had an 11-9 win-loss record in the elimination round before being swept by the Singapore Slingers in the best-of-three semifinals.
Ilagan sees a rise in the interest in Alab Pilipinas and they expect to be invited in more overseas tournaments.
“I think anytime you have a Philippine team in any tournament, regardless if it’s an invitational cup in the Middle East or whatever, the presence alone of the Philippines brings passionate fans to the game, and with it, the competitiveness of the tournament.
“Even if Alab wasn’t able to make it to the finals, I’m very happy with the way they performed even with the personnel concerns that they have,” said Ilagan.