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The Fight is not over yet for Gilas Pilipinas

By: AC Bautista

Three days in the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 five teams have secured their ticket to the second round. Canada, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, and Montenegro advance to the second round after two wins in their respective groups. Five teams were also eliminated from the World Cup: France, Finland, Lebanon, Egypt, and Mexico.

Some Photos Taken From ABS-CBN Sports (

Montenegro defeated Egypt, 89-74 after Vladimir Mihailovic made a 3-pointer in the Mall of Asia (MOA) Arena. This win booked Montenegro’s spot for the second round of the World Cup. Chicago Bulls player Nikola Vucevic was Montenegro’s top performer, with 16 points and 7 rebounds.

Mindaugas Kuzminskas shot his 3-pointer in the MOA Arena, leading Lithuania to its win against Mexico, 96-66. Following this win Lithuania gained their spot in the top 16 of the World Cup. Mindaugas Kuzminskas led Lithuania with 14 points and 8 rebounds.

The Philippines fell short against Angola, 80-70 in their game at the Smart Araneta Coliseum as Bruno Fernando scored the last two points for Angola. Despite the loss, Gilas’ Jordan Clarkson weaves through, finishing the game with 21 points and 3 rebounds.

Having two losses in the World Cup, Gilas Pilipinas have slimmer chances in advancing to the second round. The current standing for Group A shows that the Dominican Republic is on top with 2-0, followed by Italy and Angola with 1-1, and the Philippines with 0-2.

The games on Tuesday, August 29 will determine the fate of Gilas in the World Cup.

The Dominican Republic can boost the Philippines’ chance of advancing to the second round by beating Angola. If the Dominicans win, they earn the top spot for Group A, and advance to the next round. This puts Angola down to 1-2, granting Gilas a tiebreaker in their standings. But, it doesn’t end there.

Gilas will face Italy in the Smart Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City on Tuesday. Angola currently has a -4 point difference, while Italy has +13, and the Philippines has -10. If Angola loses, Gilas must win against Italy by at least 13 points to overhaul Italy’s point difference. This will result in a +1 point difference for Italy, and the Philippines will have a quotient of +3.

This is easier said than done as 13 points is a lot against the Top 10 European powerhouse. However, ‘Never Say Die’ is one of the many Filipino phrases, and Tuesday is the day we present ourselves with this mindset.

Angola encounters the Dominican Republic at 4 p.m. at the Smart Araneta Coliseum, while the Philippines will try to conquer Italy at 8 p.m.

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