FIBA World Cup: Absent in Spain, Almazan made sure to stay ready for Gilas

Camille B. Naredo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 15 2019 01:50 AM

MANILA, Philippines—Meralco center Raymond Almazan reunited with his Gilas Pilipinas teammates on Wednesday night, after failing to join them in a training camp in Spain due to visa issues.

The team arrived in Manila on Tuesday evening and returned to work a day later, much to Almazan's surprise.

"Ang alam ko nga, meron silang one-day break para makapag-pahinga man lang, maka-recover. So nagulat din ako na may practice tonight," Almazan said.

It was of little trouble to the big man, however, who practiced with the Bolts from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., then rested for a bit before returning to the court at Meralco Gym — this time with the national team.

"Na-miss daw ako ng Spain, kasi ako ang makulit sa amin," Almazan said.

While the national team was in Spain, Almazan took 3 days off before plunging back into action, doing extra workouts and playing games to stay in shape.

"Para pagbalik nila, ready pa rin ako, tapos hindi ako ’yung mahuli, in terms ng conditioning especially mga play. Kaya nga pagdating nila kanina, nagtanong ako kung may mga new plays kami, wala naman daw binago," he said.

Almazan said he and the national team are ready for the upcoming 2 weeks, wherein they will hold daily practices to prepare for the FIBA World Cup.

"Kailangan, buhos na natin lahat," he said. 

The national team pool will be complete by Monday next week, when the players from TNT and San Miguel Beer join practice anew upon the conclusion of the PBA Commissioners' Cup Finals. They will then play exhibition games against the Adelaide 36ers on August 23 and 25 ahead of their trip to China. 

For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website.