Jun 19, 2018

Castro, Romeo head Asian Games team

Gilas Pilipinas veterans Jayson Castro and Terrence Romeo were among the eight TNT KaTropa players named to the national team roster for the 18th Asian Games which starts on Aug. 18 in Indonesia.

Joining Castro and Romeo in the quadrennial meet are fellow Gilas mainstays Troy Rosario and Roger Pogoy, former Philippine team members Kelly Williams and Jericho Cruz, Tony Semerad and Don Trollano.

Coach Chot Reyes, who will handle the Asiad team, also added naturalized player Andray Blatche and Gilas Cadet members Kobe Paras, Ricci Rivero of University of the Philippines and Abu Tratter of PBA D-League side Marinerong Pilipino.

The inclusion of the eight TNT players came after an agreement between the PBA Board of Governors during its board meeting recently.

The setup is similar to one used in the 1994 Hiroshima Games when San Miguel was picked to represent the country as a reward for capturing the All-Filipino crown. The Beermen later added players from other PBA teams and in the amateur ranks.

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Alaska had offered to lend one player for the Asiad but Reyes eventually decided to stick with the TNT core as to not disrupt the Aces' preparation for the Governors' Cup.

The team heads to Indonesia with Williams as the only player having the experience of playing in the Asiad.

Williams took part in the 2010 Guangzhou Games where the Rajko Toroman-mentored Gilas team finished sixth.

Castro, Romeo, Rosario and Pogoy are no strangers representing the country in various FIBA-sanctioned tournaments while Cruz was a member of the national squad that captured gold in the 2013 Southeast Asian Games in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar.

Semerad and Trollano, on the other hand, will represent the country for the first time.(JT)

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