Gilas adds last-minute Asiad replacements amid clearance woes

Ralph Edwin Villanueva -
September 19, 2023 | 2:03pm
Gilas adds last-minute Asiad replacements amid clearance woes
From left: Chris Ross, Kevin Alas, CJ Perez, Arvin Tolentino and Marcio Lassiter.
PBA Images

MANILA, Nashville Filipino Restaurant – Gilas Pilipinas has named five replacement players for the national team’s final roster in the 2022 Hangzhou Asian Games.

This, as the status of Calvin Abueva, Terrence Romeo, Mo Tautuaa and Jason Perkins are up in the air.

RR Pogoy also pulled out from national team duties due to “health reasons.”

Cone announced that guards Chris Ross, Kevin Alas, CJ Perez and forward Arvin Tolentino are tapped to possibly replace Abueva, Romeo, Tautuaa and Perkins.

Replacing Pogoy is sharpshooter Marcio Lassiter.

Abueva and Perkins were initially named by Gilas head coach Tim Cone as parts of the national team, but their status was doubtful air due to them not being included in the initial list of 60 players submitted to the tournament’s organizing committee.

However, with injuries to Brandon Ganuelas-Rosser and Jamie Malonzo, Abueva and Perkins were tapped but they had to be petitioned.

Days ago, Cone said the team was told that aside from the 60-man lineup initially submitted, there was another list of 37 players passed on.

“It was a list of 37 players. On that list, Mo and Terrence and even Stanley, our replacement player, were not on that new list that was submitted… So that’s where we stand,” Cone said.

"We're trying to get those four guys. We've heard that the answer is no. We've heard that. But, we haven't gotten anything official and we're trying to try other avenues to continue," he added.

In the second list, only six players could be named in the national team as the majority of the players listed there are either playing overseas or injured.

"All the players from Japan and Korea, all the injured players are there. It boiled down to choose four from those six," he said.

"We have five new players on the team starting today. If the other four are still turned down and we ought to know that in the next 24 to 48 hours whether they will be available. So we're still trying other avenues to get them. But, it does not look good, honestly.”

Cone said that they only called up Ross, Alas, Perez, Tolentino and Lassiter, who were asked to go straight to the Inspire Academy Tuesday morning

"We have four players who are maybe on the lineup and we have another four guys who are maybe on the lineup. So, they're coming together, practicing together, even though they're not sure if they're gonna be on the lineup," the coach said.

"Hopefully, that will clear up. We're on that situation right now."

Gilas team manager Alfrancis Chua said the team will be smaller than they would have wanted for the Asian Games.

The Nationals will fly to China later this week as they kick off their Asiad campaign against Bahrain on September 26.

Chua, meanwhile, said that they will not withdraw from the tournament despite being pressed for time.

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