CHOT Reyes put together a fast, guard-heavy Gilas Pilipinas lineup for the match against a towering Australia side in the second window of the qualifiers for the 2019 Fiba World Cup.
Reyes, as usual, took to his personal Twitter page to announce a 14-man lineup made up of eight guards and just six big men, the most surprising being former La Salle frontliner Abu Tratter.
Calvin Abueva, who was dropped from the pool by Reyes for missing the team's first three practices, was recalled to join Carl Bryan Cruz, Japeth Aguilar, June Mar Fajardo, Tratter and Andray Blatche in a frontline that is short both on depth and size.
Reyes later explained that Troy Rosario failed to get a clearance from doctors after a bad fall in a PBA game while Mac Belo, he said, 'wasn't 100 percent.'
Making up the Gilas backcourt for the Feb. 22 away match against the Boomers and the Feb. 25 home game against Japan are Jayson Castro, Kiefer Ravena, Kevin Alas, Jio Jalalon, RR Pogoy, Matthew Wright, Allein Maliksi, and Gabe Norwood.
The team leaves for Melbourne on Monday.
Tratter’s addition was the biggest surprise made by the coaching staff, although he was right there when Gilas began its daily practices since Monday last week.
The Fil-Am out of De La Salle is part of the 23 players named by Reyes as part of the pool for the 2023 FIBA World Cup.