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Chot admits not having Blatche for Asia Cup drags Gilas’ confidence down



Philippine Sports News - Tiebreaker Times Chot admits not having Blatche for Asia Cup drags Gilas' confidence down Basketball Gilas Pilipinas News  Chot Reyes Andray Blatche 2017 FIBA Asia Cup

As Gilas Pilipinas will no longer have naturalized center Andray Blatche for the 2017 FIBA Asia Cup in Lebanon, head coach Chot Reyes admitted that the team’s confidence is currently low, for Blatche’s loss is a huge gap to fill.

“Very, very low,” said the outspoken mentor, after Gilas’ practice Thursday night at the Upper Deck Gym in Pasig City.

“I mean we’re going to fight. We’re going to fight like hell but we have to manage expectations.”

Reports circulated days ago that Blatche was not keen in playing for Gilas in the biennial continental meet. Reasons have yet to be disclosed by Blatche himself, but Reyes believes that the air will be cleared soon.

“I think he’s gonna issue a statement soon,” said Reyes.

Another concern for Reyes and Co. is the turnout of Gilas cagers in every practice session leading up to the Lebanon-hosted cagefest, which is always clouded with uncertainties owing to the players’ respective commitments.

“I thought we had 12 days practice and right, we have 12 days practice except not with the whole team, hindi kumpleto. It’s gonna be very, very difficult,” stressed the veteran tactician, as only 16 players showed up Monday night.

Still, the 53-year-old coach believes in his wards’ capability to endure all the challenges on the horizon.

“But you know these guys. They never quit, they never give up. Hopefully we can spring some surprises come FIBA Asia,” said Reyes, a coach for 24 years.

“It’s gonna be really difficult but we’re going to try our best.”