It's the human and fun side of our sports heroes

Jayson Castro isn’t only Gilas’ best player, he’s also their best ‘coach’

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Jayson Castro is not yet done writing his legacy as the country’s best national team player ever.

“The Blur”, who announced his retirement from international basketball last year, proved to be the foil to a gritty and well-coached Japan team as he he powered the Philippines to a 77-71 victory in Tokyo Friday night.

Castro more than made up for the absence of Terrence Romeo, the Gilas’ top scorer, as he matched shot for shot Japan’s ace Makoto Hiejima who had 20 points, five rebounds and five assists.

But Castro’s wizardry was apparent not only on the court but off it as he could not stop himself from dishing out smart plays to fellow Gilas players.

Basketball guru Andy Jao, who was the TV analyst on TV5, was critical of the unimaginative plays of Gilas coach Chot Reyes throughout the game.
Jao noted how Gilas’ plays were limited to dribble drives and questioned why Reyes did not make use of naturalized player Andray Blatche’s height advantage over the undersized Japan front-line.

The 6-11 Blatche, who was head and shoulders taller than his counterpart, the 6-4 Ira Brown, played beyond the stripe and had taken an inordinately high volume of ill-advised three pointers.

Good thing Castro unretired and made the right plays both in and out of the court.