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SBP assures Fajardo still a key Gilas cog despite pool exclusion

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June Mar Fajardo remains a “big” part of the Gilas Pilipinas program despite his non-inclusion in the 24-man pool for the FIBA Asia Cup qualifiers.

The Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) stressed that the PBA 5-time MVP’s absence is just an extended break after he served the national team for a long time now.

“Fajardo remains to be a big part of the future for the Gilas program. He will in fact be at his peak form when the World Cup 2023 comes along,” SBP president Al Panlilio said.

“We will need his dominance and his international experience, and we assure all his supporters that they will see Fajardo wearing a Gilas jersey in the near future.”

In the meantime, the SBP wants to give exposure for some of Gilas’ young guns, especially with the FIBA Asia Cup qualifiers still at its early stage.

On Friday, the SBP released a 24-man list as part of the pool for the FIBA Asia Cup qualifiers, a mixture of PBA players and some of the country’s top amateur stars.