Despite Gilas cadet cut, Jeron Teng vows to make self available for future national teams
La Salle star Jeron Teng says he learned a lot in the times he tried out for the Gilas cadet team to the Seaba and SEA Games under head coach Tab Baldwin. Czar Dancel

JERON Teng said he respects Gilas Pilipinas coach Tab Baldwin's decision not to include him in the team bound for two Southeast Asian-level tournaments, adding he had no regrets attending the tryouts.

The La Salle star was one of the big names left out of the final 12 of the Gilas cadet team to the 11th Southeast Asian Basketball Association (Seaba) Championship next week in Singapore and the 27th SEA Games in June.

But Teng insisted he isn’t feeling blue about the controversial cut.

“Siyempre, prerogative ng coach ‘yun. Basta ako, continue to play lang ako,” said Teng. 

La Salle coach Juno Sauler echoed Teng's words, saying he respects Baldwin's decision not to include Teng and fellow Green Archers Arnold Van Opstal and Prince Rivero in the Seaba team. Van Opstal, however, will be part of the SEA Games team.

Sauler said Baldwin and his coaching staff are in the best position to select what's best for the team since they are the ones overseeing the tryouts.

“It’s the choice of their coach,” said Sauler, who also got a chance to watch one of the Gilas cadets practices. "Whatever their decision, it is something that we have to respect because they are the ones that see the practices everyday. It’s good for them na nasa lineup pa rin sila dahil nasa reserve list sila.”

[See Douthit impressed by one Gilas cadet teammate, and it's not Kiefer or Bobby Ray]

Teng said he cherishes the experience of being mentored by no less than the Gilas Pilipinas head coach, insisting he looks forward to making himself available for the national team in the future.

“I learned a lot from him (Baldwin). I’m grateful na naging part din ako ng pool. I wish them good luck,” said Teng.

“Siyempre, national team ‘yan. Lahat ng players dream ‘yan. Kung bigyan ako ng chance, why not?” he added.

Following the cut, Teng said he will now focus on La Salle’s preparation for the UAAP, embracing a bigger leadership role as the team captain for the Green Archers.

“Kinausap ako ng mga coaches and management and they said they want me back sa La Salle. As one of the seniors and team captain, they want me to focus on La Salle para mabantayan din ‘yung mga rookies,” said Teng.

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