FOES before, teammates right now.
Less than 24 hours after, Almond Vosotros and Joseph Eriobu found themselves playing together for a bigger cause as they form part of the Philippine side that will compete in the FIBA 3x3 Asia Cup in Singapore that fires off on July 6.
Philippine lineup in Fiba 3x3 Asia Cup
Vosotros and Eriobu will be joined by TNT’s Samboy De Leon and Lervin Flores in the team to be coached by Pioneer Pro Tibay’s Lester Del Rosario.
The alliance came just after Vosotros and the Tropang Giga beat out Eriobu and the Purefoods TJ Titans for the championship of the PBA 3x3 Third Conference grand finals.
The day after the championship match which the Tropang Giga won in overtime, 21-19, Eriobu shared the same court with the TNT core in practice.
“May practice agad kami, as in wala kaming pahinga,” said Vosotros, 32.
Voted as team captain, Vosotros knows what exactly Eriobu could bring on the table and joining forces with the rest of the Tropang Giga.
“Si Eriobu madali naman maka-adjust sa amin. Yun ang wino-workout namin,” said the veteran TNT guard.
“Ngayong naglaban kami sa finals, sa tingin ko mas makukuha namin yung connection ng isa’t isa.”
The 3x3 stint marks the return of Vosotros to the national team after previously donning the national colors as part of the Gilas Pilipinas side that won the basketball gold in the 2015 (Singapore) and 2017 (Malaysia) Southeast Asian Games.
“Every opportunity naman na maibigay sa akin, kahit saan talaga, pag may tawag as in ibibigay ko lang yung best ko at maglalaro lang ako,” he said.
Eriobu himself welcomes the opportunity of working with the same team that dealt him a heartbreaker on Sunday at Robinsons Place Manila.
“Masaya. Ibang usapan na ito kasi Team Pilipinas na iyon, hindi na yung para sa team mo. Dito sa 3x3 ang dinadala mo bansang Pilipinas na,” said the 30-year-old Fil-Nigerian.
At the same time, Eriobu said detractors of the team are but an added motivation for them to do well in the July 6-10 tournament.
“Kagaya nung sinasabi sa amin nung nagpa-practice kami, ‘Hindi sila ang maglalaro. Kayo ang maglalaro, kayo ang magre-representa.’ Kaya huwag na natin isipin ang mga negative na ganun,” he added.
The Philippines opens its campaign on July 7 against Jordan and Indonesia in the qualifying draw.
The delegation leaves for Singapore on Wednesday.
We are now on Quento! Download the app to enjoy more articles and videos from SPIN.ph and other Summit Media websites.