Gilas has to ’embrace pressure’ in must-win duel vs Iran, says Guiao

first_imgPhoto by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netThe Philippines is in a fit in the second round of the Fiba World Cup Asian Qualifiers after getting into a third-place tie with Japan at 5-4 in Group F.It’s certainly a must-win situation for Gilas Pilipinas but head coach Yeng Guiao said the team is ready for the pressure that’s lingering over their heads.ADVERTISEMENT “Of course, our next game is a must-win one and of course there’s pressure, but that’s what we signed up for,” said Guiao Saturday at Mall of Asia Arena before the team’s practice in preparation for its game against Iran on Monday. “We just have to embrace the pressure and accept the consequences.”There will only be seven teams from Fiba’s Asian region that will qualify for the 2019 Fiba Basketball World Cup in China and the Philippines still has a chance to get one of those slots.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSJapeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for GinebraSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissThe tricky part, however, is that only the top three teams from Groups E and F and the better of the two fourth placers will advance and Gilas is tethering between that third and fourth spot in Group F.Gilas has to at least lock up the third seed in order to avoid any complications as they go further in the tournament and a win against Iran could bump the Philippines in a second place tie with the Iranians at 6-4 while also getting a half game of separation from Japan. And one factor Guiao is looking at in getting the better of Team Melli on Monday is having a big but skilled frontcourt.Guiao emphasized that Gilas not only has to be big but also has to be “quick and strong.”“There’s a common belief that if we just become bigger then we’re supposed to be better but it doesn’t necessarily follow,” said Guiao. “There are a lot of big guys in the international game but if you’re just going to be big for the sake of being big that’s not going to be enough.”Iran has four players who stand at least 6-foot-9 in center Mohammad Torabi who stands at that height, Meisam Mirzaeitalarposhti and Keyvan Riaei who are both at 6’10” and all those are listed as centers.And there’s power forward Rouzbeh Arghavan who stands at 7’0” making him the tallest Iranian in the competiion since Team Melli, as of writing time, doesn’t have the 7’2” Hammed Haddadi in the lineup.ADVERTISEMENT ‘Mia’: Rom-com with a cause a career-boosting showcase for Coleen Garcia 3-way tie for lead in Bahamas with Woods at the bottom MOST READ Japeth Aguilar embraces role, gets rewarded with Finals MVP plum No.13 lucky for Orlando Bloom Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college LATEST STORIES Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Ginebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup title The Philippines’ best player is four-time MVP June Mar Fajardo who stands at 6’10” and he will have a reliable stretch four with him in San Miguel teammate Christian Standhardinger who’s at 6’8” and will be Gilas’ naturalized player on Monday.“You have to be big, quick, and strong, and I think that’s what we need to factor in this game against Iran,” said Guiao. “You can’t just be big and expect to be stronger. You have to be big, you have to be skilled, you have to be quick, and those are the kinds of big men we have to contend with.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew After winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folk Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View commentslast_img read more