COACH Yeng Guiao deferred naming the players who will comprise Gilas Pilipinas' final training pool for the FIBA World Cup next month until the arrival of naturalized player Andray Blatche this weekend.
“This week pagdating ni Andray ire-release na namin yung final pool,” said Guiao on Monday.
The 6-foot-10 Blatche, according to Guiao, is expected to arrive on Friday.
The national team coach last week said the final training pool roster will be announced Monday shortly after its tune-up game against Jones Cup-bound Mighty Sports.
But Guiao wants to wait until Blatche comes over.
The training pool however, will mostly be composed of the same familiar faces that had been diligently attending the team’s twice-a-week practices.
“More or less this team na,” pointing out to the same group of Gilas which forced Mighty Sports to an 85-85 draw in their tune-up game at the Meralco gym.
The Gilas Pilipinas members who regularly attend the Monday-Thursday practices are June Mar Fajardo, Japeth Aguilar, Poy Erram, Gabe Norwood, Roger Pogoy, Marcio Lassiter, Mark Barroca, CJ Perez, Robert Bolick, Kiefer Ravena, Paul Lee and Troy Rosario.
Matthew Wright was the latest addition to the pool last week, with Blatche coming in as the 14th man in the roster.
Beau Belga has also been rigorously showing up at the Gilas training although Guiao already clarified that his status is just as practice player.
Raymond Almazan has also been regularly showing up but mostly in street clothes, and has yet to practice a single game with the team.
Stanley Pringle attended practice just once though he’s classified as a naturalized player by Fiba.