06 October 2015

Gilas Back in Manila

By Mark Giongco
PBA.Inquirer.Net, 5 October 2015

Gilas Pilipinas is back home after bagging the silver medal in the recently-concluded 2015 FIBA Asia Championship held in Changsha, China.

The Philippine team, headed by head coach Tab Baldwin, naturalized big man Andray Blatche and point guard Jayson Castro, arrived at Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila on 5 October.

The Philippines fell short of its goal to earn a slot in the 2016 Rio Olympics after bowing to China, 78-67, in the final last 3 October.

Though Gilas failed to bag the gold medal, the team still did the country proud during its campaign.

The Filipinos opened the tournament with a shocking loss to Palestine but they quickly put that painful experience behind, bouncing back with lopsided wins over Kuwait and Hong Kong before continuing their winning ways in the second round against Japan, Iran and India before turning back Lebanon in the quarterfinals and Japan in the semifinals.

One of the highlights of Gilas’ FIBA Asia stint is its 87-73 victory over the Iranians. And against the hosts, the Filipinos gave all they could amid a hostile environment and despite not getting the fair shake as far as the officiating is concerned.

Castro, Talk ’N Text’s main man, was recognized as Asia’s best point guard for the second straight time.

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