Better performance not enough as Japan routs Gilas women | Inquirer Sports

Better performance not enough as Japan routs Gilas women

/ 05:02 AM June 28, 2023

Gilas Pilipinas Japan Fiba Women’s Asia Cup 2023.

The Philippines tightened up its defense but still could not stop Japan from running away with the victory. —FIBA ASIA photo

The Philippines upgraded its performance in the Fiba (International Basketball Federation) Women’s Asia Cup on Tuesday.

But better, it turned out, wasn’t good enough against a side that has dominated the showcase for five straight editions.


Gilas Pilipinas sputtered against defending champion Japan, 95-57, at Sydney Olympic Park Sports Centre for a 0-2 start in the continental showcase.


“I think we did some adjustments playing defense, but then again, they (Akatsuki) are such a great team that they also adjusted well on that,” head coach Pat Aquino said on the heels of the rout—his charges’ second just hours after a 71-point beating at the hands of host Australia.

“Our adjustments were there. But the thing is, we really had to maintain energy and focus on the things we needed to do,” he rued. “At some point, we [became] a little bit less aggressive on both offense and defense, and I think that’s the point where we dropped down.”

The Philippines kept six-time winner Japan within striking range until the final frame where Akatsuki hit seven triples to seal the deal and annex a second victory while gaining a share of Group B lead alongside Australia.

Program anchor Afril Bernardino and new recruit Vanessa de Jesus led the way with 12 points each and could very well be key when Gilas takes on Chinese-Taipei in a critical match this Wednesday, 11:30 a.m. (Manila time).

“I think the next game is going to be more competitive than the past two games that we had. Hopefully, we’ll come out victorious,” Aquino said of the match that could keep them from sliding into the relegation game.

Justin Brownlee GIlas Pilipinas FIba World Cup

Justin Brownlee joins the GIlas Pilipinas training in Europe for the Fiba World Cup. –SBP

Meanwhile, the men’s team finally tests its mettle in a tuneup game against the Estonian national team that was set to kick off around Wednesday midnight.


The Gilas brain trust composed of Chot Reyes and Tim Cone has since been managing expectations as they are still in the process of turning its “collection of players” into a team.

The men’s squad, which is preparing for the World Cup here in August, plays Finland next. At least four friendlies are also being eyed in Lithuania, where the Nationals are going to hold the second leg of its European training camp.

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.


© Copyright 1997-2024 | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.