THE list of teams eyed for tune-up matches by Gilas Pilipinas in preparation for the 2014 Fiba World Cup is widening, thanks to the goodwill the Philippines has generated from its successful hosting of the 27th Fiba-Asia men’s championships last month.
Gilas Pilipinas coach Chot Reyes bared this on Thursday, posting on his Twitter account @coachchot: “RP FIBA hosting goes all the way to EuroBasket. NBA scouts, Euroleague officials, agents - have nothing but great feedback for Manila."
As a result, Reyes said doors are opening as Gilas looks to play friendlies against world-class teams as it prepares for next year’s showpiece in Spain.
“..Remember, there were 6 European coaches in FIBA Asia - all gave glowing praise to Pinoys' hoops passion. Now we can tune-up vs them ...,” he added.
Pending the PBA’s schedule for its 2014 season calendar, Reyes said he hopes the national team can play Olympic silver medalist Spain, new world championships qualifier France, and Argentina, among others in tune-up matches.
“..Depending on Feb draw, were looking at Argentina,Spain,Angola,Dom Rep,France,NZ, & the 3 winners of today's (Thursday) games here (in Slovenia, Fiba Euro) as possible tuneups.”
“..Of course, depending on PBA too, & they've been very helpful in adjusting their sked to give GILAS more preparation time. Thx, Com Chito!” said Reyes, who steered the Philippines back to the world basketball map following Gilas’ strong second place finish in the Asian championships.
Reyes earlier, said that the national squad won't be reduced to "tourists" in Spain as they will try to fight for every game against world-class opposition.