MANILA, Philippines — Gilas Pilipinas’ early concerns were nowhere to be found, at least after a hard-fought opening quarter in its lopsided win over Thailand in the second window of the Fiba Asia Cup 2021 Qualifiers on Friday night in Bahrain.
By halftime, the young Philippine side already had a commanding lead, 53-29, that ballooned to as high as 36 in the second half.
“Coming into this game we really weren’t sure how we would play because of the seven, eight-month layoff and we were just feeling ourselves at the start of the game,” Gilas head coach Jong Uichico said after a 93-61 win.
“Fortunately, the game turned around sometime at the start of the second quarter and I think we had more depth than they had that’s why the outcome of the game was decided somewhere in the fourth quarter,” added Uichico, whose squad assisted on 24 of its 35 made field goals.
The Thais just simply couldn’t match the Philippines’ firepower especially without their main man in Tyler Lamb.
Uichico had earlier expressed chemistry concerns with only two weeks to prepare against Thailand.
But it turned out to be a promising start for Gilas, which plays Thailand again on Monday.
All 12 players scored for Gilas with Dwight Ramos leading the way with 20 points on 7-of-7 shooting from the field. Justine Baltazar and Juan Gomez De Liaño added 12 points each.
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