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Gilas up against another mountain in Italy pocket tourney



Another tough match awaits Gilas Pilipinas as the team participates in the 2016 Imperial Basketball Tournament and will initially face the Italian National Basketball Team, which showcases three NBA-laden talents in Marco Belinelli of Sacramento Kings, Andrea Bargnani of Brooklyn Nets and Danilo Gallinari of Denver Nuggets.

Together with Gilas and Italy, China and Canada will also join the four-nation pocket tournament set in June 25 and 26.

Following a single elimination format, the winners of the two matches will advance to the finals while the losing teams will clash for the third spot finish.

Earlier this week, Gilas suffered a 35-point thrashing in the hands of Omer Asik-led Turkish National Basketball Team and obviously failed to pass their first test after their nine-day training camp in Greece.

In a report at Sports5, head coach Tab Baldwin said that the 14-man pool he trained in Karpenisi did not show up in their training-camp form against Turkey, also failing to execute their plays well.

“…But I thought the guys inside our uniforms were different from the guys who we’ve been just in camp with for ten days in Greece and I don’t know exactly what the reason is for that,” Baldwin said to Carlo Pamintuan of Sports 5.

“…It really didn’t represent, in terms of the detail, how we had played in camp and the things we have learned in camp.”

Meanwhile, Gilas will have to leave behind the sour ending of their first scrimmage off a boisterous training in Greece and move forward to further assess their capabilities to this point.

Facing a team like Italy will deliver good lessons for the squad in preparation to tough matches ahead in FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament where Philippines is set to duel against France who is also comprised of NBA players such as Tony Parker and Boris Diaw of San Antonio Spurs, Nicolas Batum of Charlotte Hornets, Joffrey Lauvergne of Denver Nuggets and Alexis Ajinca of New Orleans Pelicans.