THERE will be no expectations from the men’s national basketball team Yeng Guiao in their lone tune-up game against IECO Green Warriors on Sunday morning at the Meralco Gym.
But he wants to see how his talented wards will work and play together as one unit.
“Wala akong ma-expect pa I just want to see them in a game situation. Hindi pa natin ‘to nakita, alam natin individually magagaling ito. But how will they function as a team? So that is the question tomorrow,” Guiao told SPIN.ph after their Saturday morning practice at FCL Center Gym, Loyola Heights.
The national team takes on the IECO Green Warriors, bannered by PBA D-League stars who will see action in the Terrific 12 Asia League in Macau also this month, in a 10 a.m. tune-up.
Team Pilipinas composed of Gabe Norwood, Matthew Wright, Scottie Thompson, Marcio Lassiter, Alex Cabagnot, Beau Belga, Raymond Almazan, Paul Lee Ian Sangalang, Stanley Pringle, Asi Taulava, Poy Erram, Japeth Aguilar and Allein Maliksi will be seeing action in a game situation for the first time.
As the national team faces IECO led by Foundation Cup champions from Go for Gold Gab Banal and Jai Reyes and coached by Ariel Vanguardia, Guiao continues to miss Greg Slaughter due to his injury, while Christian Standhardinger is questionable due to his bum stomach that made him absent in the past two trainings.
After five days of training, the national team coach said that his wards need to push themselves more to reach and match the level of play of Iran.
“We’re about 75 percent of our readiness with one more day of practice today siguro nasa 80 plus na tayo pero hindi pa rin nakukumpleto we need to be close to 100 percent before we play Iran,” he said.
Guiao hoped that they could have more tune-up game like this to test the mettles of his team.
“Sana marami tayong practice games para every time na nagpapractice tayo nakikita natin ‘yung mga pagkukulang, ‘yung mga faults natin we can keep correcting them,” he said. “Now we only have one chance to correct them we only have one practice game. Another thing is Iran subok ‘yan na magkakasama sa laban, tayo bukas isang practice game tapos laban na agad so hindi tayo pa nasusubukan sa laban as a team.”
But with limited time as the team flies to Tehran on Monday for their September 13 match against Iran, Guiao just wants to make the most out of what they have.
“So we may have a glimpse of that tomorrow but it’s a small glimpse. The real test would be the game itself against Iran but I hope that’s not too late kasi I would have wanted us to be playing together a longer period of time against tough opponents,” he said. “Hindi na mangyayari yun kaya kung ano yung nandiyan pagtatiyagaan na natin.”