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Rhenz Abando misses Gilas Men call due to visa issues


By: Gab Ignacio

It was just too late for what could have been another run for Rhenz Abando with Gilas Pilipinas.

Following Strong Group Athletic’s (SGA) fourth practice on Tuesday at the Gatorade Hoops Center in Mandaluyong in preparation for the 43rd William Jones Cup, Abando told Tiebreaker Times that a ‘”miscommunication” happened when Gilas called.

“I think miscommunication. Tumawag sila five days before (flight to Europe) so pa’no namin ilalakad yung visa namin?” he said.

The Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas last month engaged in talks with SGA on the possibility of acquiring Abando to compete with the former in the upcoming FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Europe.

He would have filled the spot left by Scottie Thompson, who suffered a back injury in June that ruled him out of the competition.

SGA-Rhenz-Abando-224 Rhenz Abando misses Gilas Men call due to visa issues Basketball Gilas Pilipinas News  - philippine sports news

Among those also in consideration to replace Thompson were Jordan Heading, Boby Ray Parks Jr., and Matthew Wright.

Gilas Pilipinas flew to Riga, Latvia last July 25 to prepare for the said tourney.

Nonetheless, Abando expressed his gratitude to SGA for having him represent the country for the 43rd William Jones Cup, which is set for July 13 to 21 in Taipei.

“Sobrang thankful ko sa SGA kasi pinriority nila ‘ko,” Abando said.

This will be the fourth time that Abando will be representing the country on the international stage. The most recent was his stint with Gilas in the 2023 FIBA World Cup.

There, he led the locals in their lone victory against China with 14 points, 5 rebounds, 1 block, and 1 steal.

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The Philippines will try to reclaim the title after the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters placed 7th in the 42nd William Jones Cup last year.

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