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2023 FIBA World Cup

Justine Baltazar, James Spencer beg off from Gilas

Gilas Pilipinas’ pool is down to just 16 men.

Justine Baltazar and James Spencer have begged off from the pool for different reasons.

According to a source close to Baltazar’s camp in Pampanga, the 6-foot-7 Kabalen has notified the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas that he won’t be able to join the team for the third window.

Baltazar was with Gov. Delta Pineda when he told the SBP’s brass about it during Gilas Youth’s team building session in Pampanga.

Baltazar is just finishing his commitments with Pampanga Delta in the NBL-Pilipinas before flying out with his family to Hiroshima.

The source also added that Baltazar remains committed to the program and will be there for future windows since the B.League has FIBA breaks.

The 25-year-old is averaging 19.3 points, 15.7 rebounds, 4.0 assists, 1.7 steals, and 1.0 blocks per game.UAAP-84-MBB-ADMU-vs.-UP-Finals-G1-James-Spencer-2065-1 Justine Baltazar, James Spencer beg off from Gilas 2023 FIBA World Cup Basketball Gilas Pilipinas News  - philippine sports news

Meanwhile, Spencer is still rehabbing from a plantar fasciitis injury he sustained during Game One of the UAAP Season 84 Men’s Basketball Finals.

“Si James Spencer, nagrerehab siya. He is in Australia. He already said he cannot join his team because he is injured. Plantar fasciitis which he is rehabbing now,” said Chot Reyes during an interview with Radyo 5’s Power and Play with Kom. Noli Eala.

EAC’s Allen Liwag has been training with the team but is still a project, according to Reyes.

“Right now, he is pretty raw but he has size and has the athletic ability. Hindi natin alam kung san aabot yung bata na to,” he said.

Ricci Rivero, on the other hand, will only return from a vacation in Siargao on Monday.

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