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    Fiba tournaments resume, but Gilas Youth still in limbo

    Jan 13, 2022

    YOUTH competitions are back this year as Fiba announced its full calendar for 2022.

    The international governing body for basketball bared that the Fiba U-16 Asian Championship will be held from June 12 to 19 in Kuwait while the Fiba U-18 Asian Championship will be on August 21 to 28 in Iran.

    Gilas Pilipinas Youth, however, is under a cloud of uncertainty with the team yet to reconvene in two years.

    "Unfortunately, we haven’t been given the go signal to train or even assemble because of the government rules and health and safety protocols. Bawal pa sa youth level eh," lamented coach Sandy Arespacochaga in a short message to Spin.ph.

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      The national youth team pool remains a big question mark with the stalwarts from the last competitions already graduating and some even progressing to the seniors team.

      Kai Sotto bannered those youth teams. He along with Carl Tamayo, Dave Ildefonso, and Geo Chiu have since graduated to the Gilas squad which played in the 2021 Fiba Asia Cup qualifiers and the Fiba Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Belgrade last year.

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      Arespacochaga also faces a big problem with some of the players he assembled two years ago potentially being overaged once the competitions tip off.

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      Jordi Gomez de Liano, the younger brother of ex-University of the Philippines and current Japan B.League imports Juan and Javi Gomez de Liano, is also included in the pool.

      For now, Arespacochaga has no other choice but to remain idle as he hopes that the COVID-19 situation in the country improves so the national youth team pool is finally able to reconvene, hopefully soon.

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        "We have to wait for the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) for any official announcements. I am hoping that this would be the opening for us so we can be allowed to assemble and train already," he said.

        Continue reading below ↓

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