MANILA, Philippines -- Gilas Pilipinas coach Chot Reyes added two new players while recalling two more to the 2014 national pool for the FIBA World Cup in Spain and most probably, in the Asian Games as well.
Paul Lee of Philippine Cup finalist Rain or Shine, Marcio Lassiter of San Miguel Beer are the new additions to the lineup while Meralco's Jared Dillinger and Ginebra rookie Greg Slaughter got another look after missing the cut the last time.
The four players will join the FIBA Asia group led by Jimmy Alapag, LA Tenorio, Jayson Castro, Larry Fonacier, Jeff Chan, Gabe Norwood, Gary David, Ranidel Ocampo, Marc Pingris, Japeth Aguilar, Junemar Fajardo and naturalized player Marcus Douthit and reserve Beau Belga.
Meanwhile, Andre Blatche of the Brooklyn Nets is the other naturalized player for the pool but his stint is still awaiting Congressional approval.
“I would like to acknowledge the team owners and the PBA Board of Governors for allowing me to name the players in the pool. I would like to thank the PBA for its continued partnership to the national team effort,” the national team head coach said.
Phl, which bagged the silver medal, is returning to the world stage for the first time since it hosted the 1978 edition at the Araneta Coliseum.
The team is bracketed with powerhouse Argentina, Greece, Puerto Rico and Senegal. They will play in Seville for the Preliminary Rounds.
The national pool will plunge back to practice starting on Monday at 8pm in the Philsports Arena but several players might skip with some of them espscially from the Phil. Cup protagonists Mixers and Painters given a week-long break by their respective teams.
The team will continue to hold once-a-week practices until after the third conference ends where they can have at least 45 days of full training before the FIBA World Cup.