SMART-Gilas Pilipinas national coach Chot Reyes has named his lineup for the 2012 FIBA Asia Cup slated in Tokyo, Japan.
Ginebra San Miguel’s LA Tenorio, who won Most Valuable Player honors in SMART-Gilas’ title run in the 34th William Jones Cup, leads the lineup along with holdovers Gabe Norwood and Jeff Chan of Rain or Shine, Gary David of GlobalPort, Larry Fonacier and Ranidel De Ocampo of Talk ‘N Text, Enrico Villanueva of Barako Bull, Jay-R Reyes of Meralco, Sonny Thoss of Alaska, Filipino-American Matthew Rosser and naturalized center Marcus Douthit. Talk ‘N Text forward Jared Dillinger will be the only new addition to the team, with Meralco guard Sol Mercado being rendered ineligible because of FIBA Asia rules concerning foreign-born citizens.
“FIBA doesn’t recognize Sol Mercado’s eligibility when he played for the Asian Games, just like (Marcio) Lassiter and (Chris) Lutz case. Don’t ask me why,” wrote Reyes on his Twitter account. In last year’s FIBA Asia Championship, the Filipino-American duo missed the preliminary round of the competition before being allowed to suit up.
Alaska’s Mac Baracael and former San Beda sharpshooter Garvo Lanete have also been dropped from the team because the FIBA Asia Cup only allows 12 players, in contrast to 14 for the Jones Cup. But Reyes said on Twitter that Lanete will still make the trip to Tokyo with the team.
Reyes said that other SMART-Gilas pool members Jayson Castro, Ryan Reyes, and Kelly Williams, all from Talk ‘N Text, are still recuperating from injuries.