Gilas steps up training for Fiba tilt


11:45 PM June 26th, 2013

By: June Navarro, June 26th, 2013 11:45 PM

The preparation of Gilas Pilipinas for the Fiba Asia Championship has kicked into high gear with the national team working out twice daily starting yesterday.

Clamoring for more floor time at the Mall of Asia Arena, the PBA-powered squad got their wish, allowing the team to maximize homecourt advantage in the Asian championship set at the ultramodern venue on Aug. 1 to 11.

Gilas is also aiming to play more games against foreign clubs that could simulate the competition in the qualifier for the 2014 Fiba Asia Cup in Spain.

Gilas team manager Butch Antonio said they’re hoping to book five games in New Zealand early next month and one more against the Kazakhstan national team a week before the tournament.

“We’re trying to get more international games as possible,” said Antonio. “The purpose of going out of the country is not just to train, but to meet opponents that could really help us prepare for the tournament.”

He said the team worked out at the Smart Araneta Coliseum yesterday morning and was scheduled for another scrimmage at the MOA Arena late last night.

“We want to take advantage of the opportunity at MOA and try to sustain the schedule of practicing twice a day,” said Antonio.

Two weeks ago, Gilas coach Chot Reyes grumbled about the unavailability of the Arena, the main venue of the Asian championship.

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