Latest Stories

Clean Living

PH hosts Fiba Asia caging after 40 years


THE PHILIPPINES gets the golden chance to host once again on Aug. 1 to 11 the Fiba Asia basketball tournament, the qualifier for the World Championship next year in Madrid. The top three teams will qualify to the world championship from a field of 15 teams which are the best and toughest in Asia.

Formerly known as the Asian Basketball Confederation (ABC) tournament, the event was dominated by Filipinos in the past. The last time the Philippines won was in 1973 behind the sweet-shooting William Adornado, the legendary Robert Jaworski, the tall but nimble Ramon Fernandez and Alberto Guidaben, with capable support from playmakers Francis Arnaiz and Rosalio Martinez.

Also in the powerhouse team were Ricardo Cleofas, Rogelio Melencio, Manuel Paner, David Regullano, and Alberto Reynoso. Beanpole Jaime Mariano was the team captain, with alternate Lawrence Mumar and Gregorio Dionisio. The team coach was the late Valentin “Tito” Eduque.

The Filipinos were also the winners of the ABC in 1960 (Manila), in 1963 (Taiwan) and were likewise a dominant factor in Kuala Lumpur, Seoul, Bangkok and Tokyo.

Hagop Khajirian of Lebanon, the Fiba Asia secretary general who was a recent Manila visitor, said “it does not come every year to host the event for the first time in 40 years.” He also urged the host team to put up a great effort since “success will come as a result of hard work, and not by luck. There’s no luck in winning the championship.”

The Lebanese basketball guru later signed the hosting agreement with tycoon and Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas president Manny V. Pangilinan, officially making Manila the home of Asia’s biggest basketball show this year.

* * *

Philippine team coach Chot Reyes said he’s glad that Philippine Basketball Association commissioner Chito Salud is doing everything to benefit the Filipino five. The PBA had earlier passed a resolution requiring its member-teams to lend at least one player to the national team.

Reyes has won two international titles since taking over the Smart Gilas Pilipinas program  last year. He said members of the Jones Cup, Fiba Asia Cup and Dubai and Hong Kong tournament teams that he handled will all be considered for the national five in the Fiba Asia Men’s Championship.

The Philippines, which will clash with powerful teams in the region including China, Iran, Lebanon and South Korea, finished a record third place in the World Basketball Championship in Rio de Janeiro in 1954.

* * *

The country’s team preparing for this year’s Fiba World qualifier in Madrid started a mite too late unlike its rivals who have been playing as a team for so many months now.

“The Filipinos are definitely facing rough sailing in the world championship. It is not only China, Iran and South Korea that stand in their way,” said an insider. “They also have to contend with Lebanon, one of the strongest teams in the region, whose players are quite strong, experienced and skillful.”

Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

More from this Column:

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Basketball , Fiba Asia basketball tournament

  • http://twitter.com/Rociaeil Roxy ƸӜƷ

    Yay, finally after 40 years! Best of luck to our Gilas Pilipinas!

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/KXIL5TOZ2M6A2OWZFQRR2YY3WE Walaparintatalosaalaska

    asa pa ang pinas! gone are the days of adornado, jawo and guidaben even that of samboy, hector and caidic. at least there was a time when we can be trully proud of our basketball skills. but now, its about time to consider other sports that are not height challenging ones. peace.

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94


  • LPA enters PH, to bring rains and thunderstorms
  • Sing-along saint: Showbiz world gets papal inspiration
  • Two-thirds of underwater search done, no sign of MH370
  • S. Korea prosecutors turn to mobile app for ferry probe
  • 31 dead in Holy Week incidents—NDRRMC
  • Sports

  • Reigning champs Miami open playoffs with win
  • Spurs subdue Mavericks in playoff opener
  • Wawrinka beats Federer to win Monte Carlo Masters
  • Ageless Hopkins pitches 50-50 Mayweather deal
  • Goodbye MGM, Las Vegas for Pacquiao?
  • Lifestyle

  • Miss America: Don’t suspend teen over prom invite
  • Transitions and resurrection in the performing arts
  • ‘Archaeology tour’ of Cebu’s heritage of faith
  • Historic Fort Bonifacio tunnel converted into a septic tank
  • ‘Imports’ from London, and play of the year
  • Entertainment

  • Discovery network cancels Everest jump
  • ‘Captain America’ stays strong atop US box office
  • Easter musings
  • Solenn in shorts
  • Unmerry mix of attention-calling moves on ‘Mini-Me’ TV tilts
  • Business

  • Oil prices down in quiet Asian trade
  • Asian shares mixed in holiday-thinned trade
  • BDO seen keen on bidding for Cocobank
  • Bataan freeport investment pledges up 1,302%
  • Golden Week
  • Technology

  • PH has slowest internet in Southeast Asia
  • Nintendo’s trailblazing Game Boy marks 25th anniversary
  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Opinion

  • Gigi’s home
  • Palace stonewalls on MRT inquiry
  • Couple of things too
  • There is plenty of water behind Wawa Dam
  • Triduum thoughts of a young boy
  • Global Nation

  • Obama on mission to quiet Asia skeptics
  • Search for Etihad passengers launched
  • Japan presents $57-B ‘dream plan’ to solve Metro congestion
  • Tim Tebow’s charity hospital in Davao seen to open in 7 months
  • OFW died of Mers-CoV in Saudi Arabia, says family
  • Marketplace