Chot Reyes bares Gilas 5.0 24-man roster; veterans out for good


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MANILA, Philippines - After re-taking over the Philippine Men’s National Basketball Team‘s helm from Tab Baldwin, Coach Chot Reyes revealed his 24-man pool that shocked all Filipino die-hard fans minutes before the Phoenix Petroleum - Barangay Ginebra game on Sunday, January 22, 2016 at the Philsports Arena in Pasig City.

Chot Reyes bares Gilas 5.0 24-man roster; veterans out for good

Mixed with Gilas Cadets led by super rookie and 2016 top draft pick, Mac Belo, the National Team undergoes a major revamp in terms of roster. PBA gunners and hustle players Ranidel De Ocampo, Gabe Norwood and Marc Pingris’ Gilas journey has come to an end. Nevertheless, two caliber players have rejoined the team to solidify the entire lineup.

Two-time Best Point Guard in Asia and TNT main man, Jayson Castro-William, just came back from retirement and heeded his former coach’s call to serve the country once again. Castro-William who announced his retirement after the Olympic Qualifiers here in Manila last year, had expressed his intention to wear the national colors one more time if will be given another chance by Chot Reyes.

Hustle player Calvin Abueva (Alaska) who got cut by Tab Baldwin for the Manila-leg Olympic Qualifiers is also set to rejoin his fellow Kapampangan, Castro-William after being called-up together with another Pampanga native Japeth Aguilar (Ginebra), three-time MVP June Mar Fajardo (San Miguel), prolific scorer Terrence Romeo (Globalport), swagger Paul Lee (Purefoods) and skyscraper Raymond Almazan (Rain Or Shine).

Prior to the selection, Chot Reyes, backed-up by Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) asked PBA Commissioner Chito Narvasa and the league’s board to support the Gilas Pilipinas program by loaning them one player from each team. To fulfill that promise, NLEX, Meralco, Phoenix, Blackwater and Mahindra lend Brandwyn Guinto, Jonathan Grey, Norbert Torres, Art dela Cruz and LA Revilla to the National Team respectively.

After hearing the newcomers’ names, many basketball aficionados questioned Chot Reyes on his decision to include the inexperienced players. Reyes quickly answered and told the public that the team needs fresher legs and young guns in preparation for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Right now, the team is comprised of players who are 30 years old and under.

Aside from Mac Belo, Matthew Wright, Jio Jalalon, Kevin Ferrer, Mike Tolomia, Russel Escoto, Roger Pogoy, Carl Cruz, Ed Daquioag, Alfonso Gotladera, Arnold Van Opstal and Von Pessumal completed the 24-man roster of Gilas 5.0.


Together with Chot Reyes, ex-Gilas Captain Jimmy Alapag joins the coaching staff along with Jong Uichico and Josh Reyes who are all tasked to hone and toughen-up the young team in three year time.

Reyes also announced that TV5 has just sealed a special five year partnership deal with FIBA in broadcasting all official tournaments and qualifiers around the globe.

--Joey Boy Capos, The Summit Express

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