Gilas Pilipinas will have to contend in the 2014 Asian Games sans Andray Blatche, despite getting permission from FIBA, as the Olympic Council of Asia stood by their decision to rule him as ineligible.
SBP Vice Chair Ricky Vargas confirms receipt of OCA's decision denying Andray Blatche eligibility to the Asian Games. #GilasPilipinas
— Fraulein Olavario (@frauey) September 8, 2014
News5 sports reporter Fraulein Olavario tweeted that Samahang Basketball ng Pilipinas Vice-Chair Ricky Vargas got confirmation from the OCA about the decision.
FIBA letter to IAGOC re: Blatche eligibility … pic.twitter.com/q9Qlgv7mMj
— SBP Inc (@officialSBPinc) September 6, 2014
That flies in the face of a letter from FIBA Secretary General Patrick Baumann to the Incheon Asian Games Organizing Committee that said that the naturalized NBA player should be eligible as only FIBA can decide on such matters.
The OCA, which oversees the Asian Games, has a stricter set of requirements for eligibility, which includes a residency rule of three years for naturalized citizens.
It is not immediately clear if Gilas Pilipinas will be able to replace Blatche with Marcus Douthit, or another player for that matter.