Fans can watch the Philippines vs. Turkey basketball game live online and see if Gilas Pilipinas can end their warm-ups on a high note before the FIBA 2016 Qualifying tournament.
The teams will meet on Friday at the Mall of Asia (MOA) Arena in Pasay City, Philippines, giving them one final chance to fine-tune the rosters before their chance at qualifying for the Rio Olympics.
Fans who watch the Philippines vs. Turkey basketball game live online will see if Gilas Pilipinas can maintain the momentum from their big win in Europe. The team scored a major upset over China, winning 72-69 at the Palodozza in Bologna, Italy.
Gilas Pilipinas had come into the match on a two-game losing streak and looked as if they would end their European trip on a low note. But instead the team rallied behind 18 points from Terrence Romeo and got a timely free throw from Marc Pingris to seal the victory.
“It’s good to get out of this trip with a win,” said Gilas Pilipinas head coach Tab Baldwin (via Sports 5). “We saw some positive changes during the second half of the game against Italy and the team built on it.”
Baldwin added that it was a huge win for the Philippines, which held a 10-point lead in the second quarter before China rallied. Though the Chinese team was without Yi Jianlian and Zhou Qi, they still had a considerable height advantage over Gilas Pilipinas, Sports 5 noted.
“China has what we want right now,” said Baldwin. “They are the best team in Asia and they have an Olympic slot but we want them to feel that we’re going for that spot.”
But winning in the FIBA Qualifying tournament will be a tall task for the Philippines. Turkey’s head coach, Ergin Ataman, was very blunt this week when asked about the chances of the Philippines advancing in the tournament.
“Philippines beating France is impossible for me. Against France, I don’t give any chance to the Philippines,” he said (via PhilStar).
“Maybe against New Zealand, they will fight for a good result,” Ataman added.
He’s not likely to get many arguments. France is the fifth ranked team in the world and favored to win it all in FIBA’s Manila tournament. France is led by a number of NBA stars, including Boris Diaw, Tony Parker, Nicolas Batum, and Joffrey Lauvergne.
Fans who watch the Philippines vs. Turkey basketball game live online could see a Gilas Pilipinas team on a mission, however. Playing in front of their home crowd, the team has a chance to start building momentum toward a tournament run and what could be a decent chance at reaching the final.
The Philippines team is in Group B along with France and New Zealand, with the top two teams from each group playing in a crossover knockout semifinal. If Gilas Pilipinas can perform well enough against New Zealand, they may end up having a chance to advance to the end and hope one of the other teams can pull off the upset to knock out France.
But fans who watch the Philippines vs. Turkey basketball game live online could still be seeing a blowout. When the two teams met earlier in June, the more season Turkey squad made quick work of the Philippines and won by 35 points, Smart Gilas Basketball noted.
Gilas Pilipinas lost to Turkey, 103-68, in a tune-up game held in Istanbul. Andray Blatche led Gilas with 23 points. Jayson Castro with 15 points (13 in the 2nd half). Calvin Abueva scored 8 points.
LA Tenorio with 6 points while Jeff Chan and Bobby Ray Parks with 5 points each.
Philippines had trouble defending Turkey from behind the arc as they made a lot of open three-point shots.
[Image via Instagram]