PH women's coach Pat Aquino appeals to 'Perlas Pilipinas' members to attend tryouts
Not a single member of the last SEA Games team dubbed ‘Perlas Pilipinas’ showed up for the initial tryout supervised by coach Patrick Aquino at the SGS gym in Quezon City last Saturday. Snow Badua

NEW Philippine women’s basketball team head coach Patrick Aquino is appealing for previous members of the squad to attend the open tryout he’s conducting for the coming Southeast Asian Games in Singapore.

Not a single member of the last team dubbed ‘Perlas Pilipinas’ showed up for the initial tryout held at the SGS gym in Quezon City last Saturday, according to Aquino.

The former University of the Philippine stalwart was recently named by the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) to handle the women’s team in lieu of longtime mentor Haydee Ong.

Under Ong and in partnership with Discovery Suites, the women’s team won silver medals in the last two editions of the biennial showcase in Indonesia and Myanmar, respectively.

Still, Aquino is extending his invitation to members of Perlas Pilipinas to show up in the tryouts, stressing they will be the first priority among the aspirants.   

“’Yung mga expected, dumating. Kaya lang, gusto ko rin silang makita (national team members) so that I can pick the best of the best,” said Aquino.

Aquino said around 40 players attended the first tryouts. The numbers will be trimmed down to its final 20 who will comprise the national pool.

The National University Lady Bulldogs coach said he wants nothing but the best to form the national team to be bankrolled by Ever Bilena.  

“They have to prove they are really the best from the rest,” said Aquino, who steered the Lady Bulldogs to the UAAP crown during Season 77 of the league.

Other than the SEA Games, the women’s team is also set to compete in the Southeast Asian Basketball Association (Seaba) Championship.

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