April 25, 2024

Tall task: Gilas grouped with two European giants in FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament

Tall task: Gilas grouped with two European giants in FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament
FIBA

The group draw for next year's FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournaments was completed on Tuesday in Miles, Switzerland.

 

Four countries will host the FIBA OQTs, which will determine who else will earn tickets to the 2024 Paris Olympics. They are Spain, Latvia, Greece, and Puerto Rico.

 

Gilas Pilipinas, which qualified for the tournament by finishing 24th in this year’s FIBA World Cup, will fly to Riga, Latvia. The national team was drawn into Group A, along with the host country and Georgia. 

 

It will be a tall task beating both teams as they are several notches above the Philippines in the world rankings. The Philippines is ranked 38th, while Latvia and Georgia are ranked 8th and 23rd, respectively.

 

Gilas Pilipinas will see action from July 2 to July 7.

 

Coming out of Group A will especially be tough for Gilas Pilipinas, as Latvia is carrying so much momentum going into the FIBA OQT after an inspiring FIBA World Cup debut, where it finished fifth overall. 

 

Of course, the Filipino cagers will not only be up against a formidable Latvian crew, led by sensational point guard Artur Zagars, they will also face a loud, passionate, and rowdy home crowd.

 

Georgia is no pushover as well, with a tall lineup possibly led anew by NBA players Goga Bitadze and Alexander Mamukelashvili. Georgia ended up in 16th place in the FIBA World Cup.

 

(PM)