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Gilas hope 'military basketball' could help them achieve Olympic dream

August 4, 2011 2:02pm

Pilipinas-Smart Gilas will go beyond reliance on individual talent when they go up against powerhouse Asian teams in the 2011 FIBA-Asia Championship for men in Wuhan, China on September 15 to 25.

The FIBA-Asia Championship is a qualifying tournament for the 2012 London Olympics.

Clearly lacking in size compared to their powerhouse Asian opponents, Pilipinas-Smart Gilas will
compensate with teamwork and tactics-focused regimented training that Serbian coach Rajko Toroman has applied to develop the team.

"We play military basketball and I like that. We are inside of the border and you have to move just inside of the border," said Toroman, who introduced a new system in the hopes of steering the Philippines back to the Olympics, in a report aired at Unang Balita.

"Don't go out of the border, you have enough space to show your individual skills inside the border. But don't create your own system. This team, Gilas, original Gilas, I think is the best tactical team in all Asia."

Gilas pointguard JV Casio believes tactical focus is what the team needs. "We can't really do this individually. We must not rely on individual skills."

Casio said Toroman and the Gilas coaching staff instilled a disciplined system that doesn't rely solely on individual skills. "They (coaching staff) showed that we should be at the right position. For us it is military basketball but I think this is what Philippine basketball needs."

Asi Taulava, on secondment from the Meralco Bolts to beef up Gilas' frontline, said teamwork will help the Philippines achieve of clinching an Olympic berth, which has eluded the country for almost four decades now.

The last time the Philippines qualified in the quadrennial Games was during the 1972 Munich Olympics where the country finished 13th out of 16 teams.

"It's going to be a whole different ball game, because now we all help one another for one purpose. It's not one guy is bigger than the other guy, it is like three guys working to achieve one goal. What we want to do is put ourselves in a position where we can medal and make everybody proud of us," Taulava said. - JVP, GMA News
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