French national team guard and recently-crowned MVP of the 2016 FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Manila, Philippines says he was overwhelmed by the Filipino support for his team throughout the event.
Though De Colo shared that he knew about the country’s passion for basketball before traveling to Manila, he still felt surprised after getting a first-hand experience of it.
“It was a great experience. We knew before coming here that Philippines fans for long love basketball but seriously, I couldn’t imagine how they respect the game and they know all the players,” De Colo said on Sunday after France defeated Canada, 83-74, to secure a passage to the Rio Olympics.
De Colo, who scored 22 points on 8-for-12 shooting in the final, averaged 17.2 PPG, 4.8 RPG, and 2.2 APG in the tournament to bag MVP honors.
“It was a great experience to play here, and after Philippines went out of the competition, they were with us. It was great,” he said.
De Colo said that as expected, the Les Bleus had a “tough game” against Canada but managed to limit the Road Warriors’ strengths.
“It was a tough game like we expected. We knew they have really good quality and athleticism. The first point coach mentioned was stop their fastbreak and that’s what we did,” he said.
The 29-year-old reigning EuroLeague MVP also gave credit to veterans like Tony Parker and Boris Diaw, who helped him develop his game.
“Now we know each other very well after all the summers together. Every summer we try to improve our game. When you play these likes of players, it’s always easy for me to play my game,” De Colo said.
“We know like I say better how to play together.”
De Colo added he will cherish the experience of playing in the Olympics again.
“This summer, it was not easy the way to go (to the Olympics) just like every time. We keep fighting and get experience year after year,” he shared.
“You know, to finish this game with the ticket to Rio is something special. For an athlete, it is special to go to the Olympic games.”
Sentimental Nash Racela glad to see TNT on the court again
Vic Manuel’s dominant endgame a long time coming for Alaska
Vic Manuel not to be denied as Alaska deals Rain or Shine first loss
Hate steps up late as Execration survives Cignal Ultra in MPL-PH QF
Phoenix not allowed to include Calvin Abueva to PBA bubble contingent
TY Tang was the smallest of players but had the biggest heart, say Guiao and Pumaren
Topex Robinson and Calvin Abueva headed ‘northbound’
SOURCES: Manansala to be named UST Tigers coach, Luib for Tiger Cubs
Munzon’s offense, Pasaol’s D lift FBS-Zamboanga City to top of Chooks 3×3 Leg 1
Zamboanga City asserts dominance in Chooks 3×3 preseason tourney
UAAP fetes gen champs, athlete-scholars, honors MVPs, second sem athletes
Chooks-to-Go donates 5,000 pcs of dressed chicken to CESAFI
- Basketball2 days ago
By playing in GAB-sanctioned Chooks 3×3, Juan Gomez de Liaño’s UP career likely over
- Basketball2 days ago
Pampanga Delta to miss collegiate stars in NBL Finals
- Basketball4 days ago
Though frustrated, Pido Jarencio says life must go on for NorthPort
- News2 days ago
GAB, PSC draw line between pros and amateurs