Castro worried about chemistry as Gilas yet to have full practices
With Gilas Pilipinas having less than three weeks to prepare for world no. 10 Australia, Jayson Castro isn’t worried with the individual conditioning of the players given their daily grind in the 2018 PBA Philippine Cup.
What bothers him, however, is the team’s chemistry — something which he feels could tilt the favor for the Philippines in the second leg of the 2019 Fiba World Cup Asian qualifiers.
“What I’m worried about is our chemistry because we haven’t had a practice where it’s all us. We haven’t had any tuneup games and we’re all against each other in the PBA,” he said in Filipino.
Since the turn of the year, the national team has only had five weekly Monday practices.
In those sessions, coach Chot Reyes has yet to have all members of his pool on the floor, with a number of players sitting out the practice while “23-for-23” cadets fill in.
That’s the reason why Castro is putting a premium on Gilas’ cohesiveness as a unit as it shoots for the upset against the reigning Fiba Asia champion Australia.
“We know how physical they are because we already saw them play in Lebanon. It feels like they’re bullying everybody, so we have to prepare with the way they play,” he said.
Castro is hopeful they could recreate the unity they showed in first window back in November with the little time they have left to prepare.
“I hope that in the remaining eight days, our chemistry will finally show up,” he said.
The Philippines takes on Australia at Margaret Court Arena in Melbourne on February 22 before facing Japan at Mall of Asia Arena on February 25.
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