The year 2023 is becoming more exciting for basketball fans. Coach Chot Reyes of Gilas Pilipinas revealed the newest list of 23 prospects for the FIBA Basketball World Cup just four days after we welcomed 2018. The list featured two UP Men’s Basketball Team standouts in Paul Desiderio and Juan Gomez de Liaño.
After 45 years, the Philippines will be hosting the prestigious basketball tournament again and Coach Chot cannot wait any longer to train the players who will represent the country in 2023.
Hours after the announcement, the UAAP Season 80 Rookie of the Year was quick to express his gratitude to be part of the highly coveted list:
it’s always an honor to rep my country again 💯 would give my best for the flag 🙏🏾 https://t.co/YE4pRQRiwD
— Juan Gómez de Liaño (@juan_swish9) January 5, 2018
Even Alex Cabagnot of PBA’s San Miguel Beermen, also a member of the UP Fighting Maroons coaching staff, made the world know through his tweet that this is a #ProudCoachMoment for him:
— alex cabagnot (@askcabaggie) January 13, 2018
On January 8, Officials of Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) finally welcomed all who have made the list in their first-ever practice session. Coach Chot recognized this event as “the largest gathering of multi-generational talent in Phil hoop history”.
It is worth noting that one of UP’s pride even stayed late after the practice for some shootaround. Juan GDL went an extra mile as he is determined to keep himself in shape and stay ready for the next steps in reaching the Gilas dream. The ‘winning attitude’ showed by the ‘Rookie ng Bayan’ earned him recognition from netizens on various social media platforms.
SBP calls the new Gilas pool ’23 for 23’ and even though Coach Chot mentioned that the list is ‘by no means final’, the whole UP community cannot help but feel ecstatic to see Maroon standouts show their ‘Utak at Puso’ in representing Team Philippines in the future.
– Follow me on twitter at @stevemmp_22