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    Scottie Thompson begs off from Gilas. Guiao says he understands

    Jun 24, 2019
    PHOTO: Jerome Ascano

    SCOTTIE Thompson is the latest player to beg off from Gilas Pilipinas.

    No less than coach Yeng Guiao bared the development on Monday, saying the Ginebra guard personally talked to him about his decision to pass on the opportunity to play for Gilas i the 2019 Fiba World Cup this August.

    "Scottie talked to me noong nasa Batangas kami. Actually, siguro pwede na nating sabihin na he's begging off," the outspoken mentor said of the former NCAA MVP.

    Guiao, though, lauded the efforts of Thompson in reaching out to him and explaining the situation.

    "I appreciate his honesty and I appreciate him talking to me. He feels he's not ready to compete internationally. It's his belief, mayroon siyang paniwala na mayroon pang ibang pwedeng makakuha ng slot niya na who can perform that role," he said.

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      Thompson has been absent from the practice sessions over the past week and has been mum on the situation with the national team.

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      But for Guiao, he appreciated Thompson's humility in accepting that there are better players out there which the Philippines can utilize for the World Cup.

      "His intention is good. He was humble enough and he was honest enough to state the truth kaysa doon sa kung ano-anong dahilan yung sasabihin nila. That's what I appreciate – just being straightforward, honest, just being humble to accept that there is somebody out there who can perform better and he will try to improve himself so he can get back to the national team," he said.

      Thompson, who averaged 2.8 points, 3.8 rebounds, and 1.8 assists in five games in the Asian qualifiers, is the third player to beg off from the China-bound squad after Jayson Castro and Ray Parks.

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        Guiao said Thompson's withdrawal opens one more spot in his pool as he looks to bolster his guard rotation. Kiefer Ravena has already joined the team practices on Monday, as well as newcomers Robert Bolick and CJ Perez and holdovers Paul Lee, Mark Barroca, and Roger Pogoy.

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        "Maybe that's another slot we're going to fill up," he said.

        The door, however, will always remain open for Thompson, as per Guiao, once he feels he's ready to don the national tri-colors anew.

        "I can appreciate his position," he said. "Ang sinasabi niya na he needs to develop his game, he needs to mature his game in order to play at the standards of the international level. Gusto niyang magpagaling daw, yung i-improve pa yung skills niya and magbabalik siya sa Gilas kung iimbitahin siya ulit."

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        PHOTO: Jerome Ascano
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