Aug 04, 2022

SMC lends a hand to SBP in show of unity

TRUE to its call for a unified basketball front as the country gears up for its campaign and hosting of the 2023 FIBA World Cup, the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) appointed San Miguel Corporation (SMC) sports director Alfrancis Chua as executive advisor of both the cage body and the Gilas Pilipinas team.

The appointment of Chua was among the major action taken by the basketball federation during the stakeholders meeting Tuesday at the PLDT office in Makati.

PBA commissioner Willie Marcial, who is among the SBP stakeholders, disclosed the appointment of Chua, whose role is more of an active consultant as far as the affairs of the national team is concerned.

"Malaki ang role niya sa SBP. So malaking tulong," said Marcial of the Barangay Ginebra governor.

Chua already had the ball rolling by suggesting to Gilas Pilipinas coach and project director Chot Reyes for the players to be named in the national team pool for the next window of the FIBA World Cup qualifiers to start practicing together every Monday.

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"Gusto niya yung practice (ng Gilas) every Monday na. Pero pag-uusapan pa rin kung paano."

Reyes certainly welcomes Chua coming on board the national team, adding he's always been in constant communication with the SMC sports director.

"I completely welcome it, we're all inclusive," said the national team coach.

"All the support and all the help we can get, we're wide open."

Marcial stressed though, Reyes still has the final say on all Gilas and national team matters.

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"Ang masusunod pa rin naman (si Chot). Magbibigay lang siya ng advice (Chua). Tingin ko hindi naman magkaka-problema," said the commissioner. (RG)