Gilas Pilipinas will enter the third and final window of the 2021 FIBA Asia Cup Qualifiers without Angelo Kouame.
This as according to a report by the Philippine Daily Inquirer’s sports editor Francis Ochoa, the 6-foot-10 Ivorian’s naturalization won’t make it this February.
“That wasn’t a likely possibility in the first place,” Rep. Robbie Puno, the author of House Bill no. 5951, told Ochoa.
“Those who had earlier said that he could be available for the February window were merely expressing a hope that the process would be done by then.”
According to a report, the second reading of the Ateneans’ naturalization hit a snag before Congress hit a recess.
Last December 2, the House Committee on Justice approved the naturalization.
Senator Sonny Angara’s Senate Bill 1892 — the upper house’s counterpart to HB 5951 — is also pending.
Tiebreaker Times also reported last Wednesday that Kai Sotto will most likely miss the February window as it coincides with the G League season.
Gilas, 3-0 in Group A, take on Korea on February 18, Indonesia on the 20th, and Korea again on the 22nd.
The Philippines needs one more win to advance to the Asia Cup proper which takes place from August 16 to 28, 2021 in Indonesia.