TERRENCE Romeo finally broke his silence and made it clear that injury, more than anything else, kept him from joining Gilas Pilipinas in its opening campaign in the FIBA World Cup qualifier on Friday in Tokyo.
Romeo said he’s currently recuperating from an injury that needs rest and therapy for him to fully recover, although he didn’t specifically mention what has been hurting him in a long post on Instagram.
“Sa mga nagtatanong kung bakit hindi ako nakasama sa Gilas; injured po ako at kailangan ko magpahinga at therapy,” Romeo, who weeks ago was reported to be on the trading block, began his long post in Filipino.
“Gusto ko rin sabihin at ipaalam sa inyo na wala pong makakapigil sa akin sa paglalaro para sa bayan maliban sa injury at kay God.”
The Globalport top gunner had to make the statement after he was left behind by Gilas when it departed for the Japanese capital on Tuesday to embark on its bid to make a return trip to the world basketball championship through its home-and-away qualifier that began this week.
Romeo was part of the 16-man pool drawn by coach Chot Reyes for the tournament but failed to make the trip due to an injury which he did confirm.
The former UAAP MVP out of Far Eastern University affirmed how he wished he could join the team, where he admitted his game really evolved to become a mature player.
“Alam po yan ng family ko at lahat ng taong nakakakilala sa akin. Malaki ang utang na loob ko sa Gilas dahil dito ako mas naging disiplinado at dito napabilis ang pagmamature ko sa basketball,” stressed Romeo.
“Dito rin nabuo yung samahan namin, hindi lang bilang teammates, kundi bilang magkakaibigan, magkakapatid, at isang family na handing lumaban para sa isa’t-isa.”
Once healthy, Romeo vowed to always make himself available if national duty calls.
“Hindi po ito yung huling pagkakataon na maglalaro ako para sa bayan,” he said. "Pag 100 percent na ako, magtatry-out ulit ako at kung deserving pa rin ako by that time, buong PUSO pa rin ako na maglalaro para sa bansa.”
For now, Romeo said all he can do is to cheer and support his Gilas teammates from the sideline.
“Ngayon mga brother hindi ninyo man ako kasama lumaban diyan, lagi kayo kasama sa mga dasal ko. Yun lang muna ang maitutulong ko,” he said.
“Maraming salamat sa pag intindi guys. God bless you all.”