Barrios: Rosario-led Gilas cadets will get job done in Seaba
SAMAHANG Basketbol ng Pilipinas executive director Sonny Barrios has zero doubts that the team the country is sending to the Seaba Cup will bring home the gold.
“We’re pretty confident na we’ll get the job done,” he said. “Coach Nash (Racela), Josh (Reyes), and Mike Oliver are all veteran international coaches in their own right. They know it would be a big problem if we don’t get the gold. We lord it over Southeast Asia and we will dominate again. They take the task very seriously.”
With just a little over three weeks of preparation, the Gilas cadets will be banking on the experience of TNT forward Troy Rosario and Blackwater guard Almond Vosotros for their scheduled tournament in Bangkok, Thailand, from May 22 to 26.
They will be joined by collegiate players in Kevin Ferrer of University of Santo Tomas, Jiovani Jalalon of Arellano University, Mike Tolomia, Roger Pogoy, Raymar Jose, Russel Escoto, and Ken Holmqvist of Far Eastern University, Von Pessumal of Ateneo, and high school star Jonas Tibayan of Chiang Kai Shek.
FEU head coach Nash Racela, who led the Tamaraws to the UAAP title last December, will call the shots for the Philippine team.
Though Barrios admitted the team misses big names like Kiefer Ravena and Bobby Ray Parks, the young Nationals are still potent enough to contend and win the gold in the regional meet.
“We have to put up the best talent we have,” he said. “Right now, there are constraints. There are those who are unavailable, but we’re still very competitive. We’re not overconfident but we know were sending a very capable team.”
Barrios also said the coaches are wary of the improved talent level of the other countries like Indonesia and Malaysia.
“We are cognizant of that. All coaches have noticed an improved game in the Southeast Asian region. They are not like before where we can rout them by 30 or 40 points,” he said.
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