2019 FIBA World Cup: Gilas ends campaign with a loss to Iran

Gilas is going home winless after a rough 2019 FIBA World Cup experience. They end their campaign with a tough loss to Asian rival Iran, 75-95. Iran clinched a 2020 Olympic berth at the expense of Gilas.

Robert Bolick played well in the final game of this year’s World Cup. He finished with 15 points and three triples, shooting 66% in the game. Andray Blatche had 12 points and five rebounds to help Gilas’ cause. June Mar Fajardo added 10 points and four boards. Nikkhah Bahrami led Iran with 17 points. Five players scored in double-digits for Iran.

Photo from FIBA

Gilas had their best shooting game against Iran, hitting 11 triples at a 40% clip. Six of those 11 treys came in the first quarter. Blatche, Gabe Norwood and Japeth Aguilar led the team to a 19-17 lead. Gilas was within striking distance of Iran all the way until the end of the first period.

Unfortunately for the Philippines, the dam broke in the middle periods. Hamed Haddadi once again imposed his will in the paint. He led Iran to a double-digit lead in the second quarter, getting whatever baskets he wanted inside. In the third period it was Behnam Yakchali and Mohammad Jamshidi that did the damage. The two dropped bombs from beyond the arc to lead Iran to a 27-point lead. Iran cruised to the win after that.

Gilas will now have to go through the Olympic Qualifying Tournament next year if they hope to make it to the Summer Games in Tokyo.