MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines' basketball quest in the 2018 Asian Games officially got going with all but one of the 14-man pool showing up for the first national team practice on Monday night, August 6.

National team coach Yeng Guiao immediately called for practice a day after the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) reversed its decision to withdraw from the Asiad.

Rain or Shine's Gabe Norwood, James Yap, Raymon Almazan, Beau Belga, Maverick Ahanmisi and Chris Tiu were all present in the training session as the country crams for the quadrennial showpiece in Indonesia before their first game on August 16.

GlobalPort's Stanley Pringle, Magnolia's Paul Lee, Blackwater's Poy Erram, TNT's Don Trollano, NLEX's Asi Taulava and Gilas Pilipinas cadets Kobe Paras and Ricci Rivero were also in attendance.

San Miguel's Christian Standhardinger was the only missing player as he remains focused on the PBA with the Beermen competing for the Commissioner's Cup title against Barangay Ginebra.

The Philippines will face United Arab Emirates in its maiden game before taking on Iran and Syria on August 19 and 25, respectively.

Although the time is ticking for Guiao, his familiarity with most of the players will be crucial as they aim to improve from the country's 7th-place finish in 2014. (READ: No time left: Guiao banks on old reliables in Asian Games)

From 14 players, the team will be trimmed down to 12 before the Nationals fly to Jakarta on August 14.



Date: August 8, 2018 | By: Delfino Diquino | Newspaper: Rappler | Source: