THANKS to the huge runner-up finish of Gilas Pilipinas in the recent 27th Fiba-Asia Men’s Championship, the Philippines is now ranked no. 34 in the world as per the latest ranking made by the International Basketball Federation (Fiba).
The country previously sat at no. 45 before making the big leap following the national team’s scintillating performance in the qualifier of next year’s Fiba-World Cup in Spain.
“This 11-place jump gives us more impetus to do even better in d next 3-yr cycle: `14 Worlds, `15 Fiba-Asia & hopefully, `16 Olympics,” said national coach Chot Reyes in his Twitter account @coachot
Gilas trounced long-time rival South Korea in the semifinals, 86-79, to earn an outright ticket to the world championship for the first time in 35 years.
Although Reyes and the nationals bowed to Iran in the fight for the gold medal, 85-71, the finish was still the highest achieved by a Philippine men’s team in the tournament since the country won the 1985 edition of the biennial meet in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia behind a squad mentored by the legendary Ron Jacobs.
The Philippines is one of the countries that had a remarkable jump after registering +11 points. Other notable movements include Egypt (+14) and Mexico (+8).
Mexico, now at no. 24 from 32, stunned the basketball world after winning the gold in the Fiba-Americas Championship, while Egypt is leapfrogged from 60 to 46 following its silver medal performance in the 2013 AfroBasket.
Asian power China which failed to make the Fiba-Asia semis is one notch down at 12th place, while Iran retained its position at 20th spot.
Lebanon was down four notches at 29th after failing to compete in the tournament held here following the suspension of its basketball federation. Behind at 30th spot is Jordan, followed by bronze medal winner Korea at 32, up by two notches.
Reigning world champion USA remained as the top basketball power in the world, while Spain and Argentina retained their respective positions at 2nd and 3rd place, respectively.