Filtered By: Sports

What's next for Gilas Pilipinas after the first FIBA window?

Gilas Pilipinas has wrapped up the first window of the 2025 FIBA Asia Cup qualifiers with dominant wins against Hong Kong and Chinese Taipei, kicking off the Tim Cone era for the national team.

What's next for them?

According to Cone, members of Gilas Pilipinas will now rejoin their mother teams across the PBA and the Japan B. League while Kevin Quiambao, the only non-professional in the pool, will return to De La Salle University for their UAAP bid. 

They will then take a long break before reconvening in late June to start the buildup for the 2024 FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament set in early July. Cone, though, stressed they will only have 10 days to prepare for the OQT due to commitments of the players to their clubs.

"We were just talking in the locker room about how this kind of feels like an ending because we don’t play again until another three or four months and so it kind of feels like an ending for us," Cone shared.

"We wish we had one more game to play next week or in a couple of days so we can keep this group together, but that’s not something we can control. I don’t think there’s one guy in our team not looking forward to June and getting back together and getting this team going."

"I think they all had a great time. We’re all looking forward to coming back together in June."

Gilas has a tough road ahead towards its dream of making it to the 2024 Paris Olympics as the Filipinos will take on world no. 8 Latvia on July 3 at the Arena Riga in Riga, Latvia before facing no. 23 Georgia on July 4 at the same venue.

However, all Cone hopes is to have a healthy 12-man lineup for the OQT.

They are expecting to have big man June Mar Fajardo and AJ Edu back by June, forming a formidable frontcourt alongside 7-foot-3 bruiser Kai Sotto.

"We got 6-foot-10 and 6-foot-11 guys that are gonna come back and join us when they’re healthy and we’re hoping that all 12 guys will be healthy in June," Cone added.

"Imagine, when we get to that European level, June Mar and Kai are gonna be playing together, AJ and Kai are gonna be playing together. That’s the thing we’re gonna have to work on in those 10 days that we have."

—JKC, GMA Integrated News