MANILA, Philippines–Gilas Pilipinas relied on familiarity and cohesion as they beat Lebanon this Friday in the sixth and final match of the Fiba World Cup Asia Qualifiers.
Naturalized player Justin Brownlee – to no one’s surprise – banners a cast that, according to a roster obtained by the Inquirer on Thursday, will feature most of the national basketball program’s games.
Six-time Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) best player June Mar Fajardo will control the front court and will be joined by Ateneo commits Mason Amoswho is about to debut his men’s team.
Jamie Malonzo, Calvin Oftana, Ray Parks Jr., Dwight Ramos, brothers Kiefer and Thirdy Ravena, and reigning PBA MVP Scottie Thompson will reprise their roles in the 6pm grudge match at the Philippine Arena wide big in Bulacan.
The guests will also enter the clash without the most powerful weapon, Wael Arajki.
CJ Perez, a World Cup veteran like the older Fajardo and Ravena, is also supporting Gilas.
Rounding out Chot Reyes’ team is Jordan Heading, a Filipino-Australian, a deadly shooter set to play his first game against Gilas Pilipinas after a contract dispute.
The Philippines currently lead 5-3 in Group E and are looking to extend their three-match winning streak against Cedars, who are also enjoying their own tears (seven games).
Both teams have qualified for the global rollout in August.
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