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    Gilas cadets' talent level at par with PBA teams, says Rajko

    Toroman says Gilas pool talent better than his old Smart Gilas side - and comparable to PBA teams
    Jun 19, 2021
    PHOTO: fiba.basketball

    RAJKO Toroman said the Gilas Pilipinas program under Tab Baldwin is headed in the right direction, seeing that the current crop of cadets is bound to be better than the original Smart Gilas team he handled years back.

    The Indonesia coach said the level of talent of the current Gilas pool is comparable to those of teams in the PBA.

    “For sure,” said Toroman when askedon whether the current Gilas crop is capable of equaling or even surpassing the Gilas squad he handled from 2010 to 2013. “I think it’s great for basketball in the Philippines to have Gilas.

    “All these players are very talented. For me, I can say that they are in the level of PBA teams in the quality of the players’ talent. And besides, you have Kouame, you have Kai Sotto that has great size. They can be competitive with anybody,” Toroman said.


    The Smart Gilas of Toroman and the Gilas Pilipinas of today have a striking resemblance in which they are being run where the players will only be committed to playing for the national team for a certain period of time.

    With Toroman at the helm, the Smart Gilas team was a success, and the Philippines returned to the international stage after it was able to build a competitive in the Asian region, and became even one win short of qualifying in the 2012 Olympics in London.

    The current Gilas also has a shot at booking a spot in the Olympics in Tokyo through the Fiba qualifying tournament set to take place in Belgrade by the end of the month.

    Mission impossible for Gilas Pilipinas?

    Toroman admitted it will be difficult for Gilas to secure that spot in the Olympics, but granted that playing against top level competition will only do this youth-laden national pool a world of good.

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    “Don’t expect some miracle in Serbia from them because they are not experienced against the great teams like Serbia and Dominican Republic. They are more experienced, but it will be great," said Toroman.


      "Now in coronavirus (COVID-19) time, you don’t have too much international games. That’s an opportunity to get experience, some exposure, and I think it will be good.

      “Whatever the result will be, this team of Philippines Gilas have a future,” said Toroman.

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      PHOTO: fiba.basketball
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