Chot Reyes: Gilas 24-man list only intended for FIBA Asia Cup

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, July 10) — Gilas Pilipinas head coach Chot Reyes on Saturday revealed the 24-man list for the 2017 International Basketball Federation (FIBA) Asia Cup.

 

In an interview on CNN Philippines, Reyes clarified that the list is for the regional tournament.

"The one that we released was the 24-man list for FIBA Asia only. If you're not in that list, you can no longer make the final lineup," Reyes said.

The list is to be narrowed down to only 12 players for the final lineup, which will compete in the FIBA Asia tournament in Lebanon from August 8 to 20.

Reyes explained the reason behind the exclusion of some Gilas cadets from the roster.

"The reason some of the cadets are not there is because they are going to be in the SEA Games lineup," he added. The FIBA Asia and SEA Games (schedules) overlap."

"That's why those who are playing in the FIBA Asia will have a difficult time playing in the SEA Games -- that's why we had to do it that way and we're very thankful for guys like Kobe (Paras), Kiefer (Ravena), Ray (Parks), and Raymar Jose all joined us because if they didn't come in, then we wouldn't be able to fill two different teams for FIBA Asia and SEA Games because of the schedules," Reyes said.

A new batch of Filipino cagers will lead the pack in the 2017 Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games) which will be held in Malaysia next month.

GABE NORWOOD RETURNS TO NATIONAL TEAM PICTURE

On Gabe Norwood's comeback to the national pool, Reyes said that the 6-foot-6 forward was never taken out of the initial list of 24 players.

"Gabe was been always part of the pool, he was never removed from it. We were just not publicizing the fact that he's there. From day one, Gabe knows that he's always on standby," Reyes said.

"The reason we put him in this pool is because we still have no certainty whether some of the PBA teams will release their players for FIBA Asia. Gabe is there for insurance purposes," the head coach said.

In an phone call with CNN Philippines, Norwood said he has yet to talk to Reyes after the FIBA Asia list was released and that he only found out about his inclusion via social media while doing an interview.

"I was actually congratulated in that interview for being named to the pool once again," Norwood revealed. "I went back to check my mentions to check and things and sure enough."

But despite his inclusion, Norwood added that he had yet to be contacted by any member of the national team management with regards to preparations for the Asia Cup.

"Still waiting to hear word on anything like that," Norwood bared. "I am just waiting in the wings, and once things are set and official and things are moving forward, I will have a better idea of things."

 

The Rain or Shine forward also clarified that he has not retired from international competition, and that it was 'an honor once again to be thought of to represent the country.'

Norwood's last international stint was in the 2016 FIBA Wolrd Olympic Qualifying Tournament Asia, where the Philippines placed sixth.