SBP reverses decision, will send a team composed of Rain or Shine core to the Asian Games

“The SBP is happy to announce that we will compete in the Asian Games,” Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) president Al Panlilio said in a joint press conference held with the PBA earlier today.

Just last week, the SBP announced that they are pulling out of the 2018 Asian Games to “regroup” and focus on the 2019 FIBA World Cup preparations. The decision was met with scrutiny by the fans who wanted to see the Philippines compete in the quadrennial event. The SBP, Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) and the PBA heard the fans and the three groups agreed to reverse the decision.

“We realized there was a strong clamor from our basketball fans and since we are the house of basketball, we need to really take a look at that clamor,” said POC president Ricky Vargas during the press conference.

The SBP has formed a 14-man core composed mainly of Rain of Shine players alongside key additions from other PBA teams and a couple of Gilas Cadets. The final 12 will be decided on before the team departs for Indonesia on August 14.

The Elasto Painter core will be composed of Maverick Ahanmisi, Raymond Almazan, Beau Belga, Gabe Norwood, Chris Tiu and James Yap. The other PBA players joining the team are Christian Standhardinger from the San Miguel Beermen, Paul Lee from the Magnolia Hotshots, Stanley Pringle from the GlobalPort Batang Pier, Poy Erram from the Blackwater Elite, Don Trollano from the TNT KaTropa and Asi Taulava from the NLEX Road Warriors. Ricci Rivero and Kobe Paras, both part of the Gilas Cadets will also be part of the pool.

The team will be coached by NLEX head coach Yeng Guiao and assisted by Rain or Shine head coach Caloy Garcia.

“We will represent the country to the best of our ability. Of course, our objective is to make our countrymen proud,” says Guiao. The expectation of the POC as explained by Vargas is to improve on the seventh place finish from the 2014 Asian Games.

The first game of the Philippine Team will be on August 16.