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    Alapag ready to step aside, says competition for Gilas point guard spots 'real tough'

    Feb 6, 2013

    GILAS Pilipinas mainstay Jimmy Alapag said on Wednesday he is willing to give way to younger guards in case he won’t be tapped for another tour of duty with the national team.

    “I don’t expect, I’ll just wait and see for now. There’s a lot of great players in the PBA," said the former PBA MVP. “Whoever the fortunate guys that are named to the team, hopefully they’d be ready to perform and bring the (world championship) slot to the country.”

    The Talk 'N Text guard said some of the most memorable moments of his career were spent with the national team, where he cut a reputation as one of the best shooters in his position and earning the respect of opponents a head taller than him.

    In the last Fiba-Asia championships, Alapag, 35, was one of the most consistent and deadliest shooters of a Gilas team that finished in fourth place under Rajko Toroman.

    But this time, the 2003 PBA Rookie of the Year admits there are other younger and equally talented sentinels available to national coach Chot Reyes, namely Jason Castro, JV Casio, and LA Tenorio.

    “The challenge in that post is tough, there are other great point guards in the league," said Alapag. "It’ll be tough (to make the team)."

    He added: “I’ve been fortunate enough to represent the country a couple of times, and we’ll see if I get in one more time."

    The former California State University standout is satisfied with how the PBA has adjusted the season calendar to give Gilas a two-month buildup for the Fiba-Asia championships.

    “You want to have as long a preparation as possible, considering the opportunity of taking on the best teams in Asia”, Alapag said.

    If tapped, Alapag said he is willing to take on any role given to him for the sake of flag and country.

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