BOCAUE — Christian Standhardinger feels that Team Philippines’ quest in the 2018 Fiba 3x3 World Cup shouldn’t have ended on Monday as he believes that they should have gone farther in the tournament.
“I’m happy that we won two games, but we should’ve won against Canada and we should’ve won against Mongolia,” he said.
Seeded 19th in the 20-team tournament, the Filipinos stared at their foes straight in the eyes and gave everything they had. That led them to a 2-2 record, good for third place in Pool C but just a win short of making it to the next round.
The hosts shocked Brazil, which were ranked eighth in the world, 15-7, in their opening assignment on Saturday before losing to the 2018 Fiba Asia 3x3 Cup runner-up Mongolia, 21-17.
Powerhouse Canada also barely got through the Philippines in a close 20-19 decision.
But Russia wasn’t as lucky, as the third-ranked team in the world was humbled by this Filipino crew, 19-12.
“I feel like when you play the game, you feel better or not bitter. And I honestly felt that we were better, but it was just the lack of experience and that’s why we didn’t win those games,” the 28-year-old said. “I think it was a great experience and I’m happy that we were at least able to give the Filipino fans two wins even though we should’ve been able to give them four.”
Standhardinger also looks at this showing on a positive light, especially with what the team has accomplished despite the situation they were in the buildup for this tournament.
“As frustrating as the losses were, let’s put it into perspective. We beat the eighth-ranked team in the world which was against Brazil and we beat the third-ranked team in the world in Russia. And this is just our first tournament,” he said.
“If this is not clear for everybody how much promise we have as a team for the next tournaments, with more practices under our belt, it’s obvious to see how much we could achieve. We just practiced 11 times, and I only had five because of my injury, and competing here unexperienced, to be able to do what we’ve done here, I’m just excited and pumped for the future, to be honest with you, as frustrating it is to have lost those two games and not be able to show the Filipino fans four victories in a row.”
And he’s hopeful that the future still includes this batch.
“Now that we have those experiences, I obviously hope that we stay together and we can make some history with this 3x3 games. You see Roger (Pogoy), Stan (Pringle), Troy (Rosario), and myself, we are very committed here. Even though we have double practices, we really want to play for the country and it’s really important for us,” he said.