The woes continue for the Philippine Men’s National Basketball Team at the 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup.
Coming off a close, overtime loss against Angola during their last game, the Filipinos suffered another blowout defeat, 86-67, at the hands of Tunisia.
The loss means Gilas Pilipinas’ hope for a chance to punch a ticket to the basketball tournament of 2020 Summer Olympic Games is now impossible, as they fall to 0-4.
The World Cup offers seven of the eight automatic seeds to next year’s Men’s basketball event in Tokyo, each awarded to the best place team from their respective continental zones: two for the Americas, two for Europe, and one each for Africa, Asia, and Oceania.
Japan, as the hosts of the 2020 Games in Tokyo, also gets an automatic berth regardless of where they finish.
While the Philippines fell to Tunisia, China took care of business against South Korea in a 77-73 nailbiter that was held simultaneously in a different city. With the win, the hosts currently has the best record among all Asian squads at 2-2, and is one step closer to securing an outright berth to the Olympics next year.
On the other hand, West asian powerhouse Iran won their first game against the latest Philippine tormentors Angola, improving to 1-3.
Iran has a chance to force a tie if they can win their next game, and in the event China loses their final game against Nigeria. In the event of a tie, the decision will come down to points differential. Meanwhile, the Philippines, South Korea, Japan, and Jordan all remain winless.
The next chance for the Philippines is to finish within the next best 16 teams in the World Cup, making them eligible to play in the Olympic Qualifying Tournament, where there will be four more spots up for grabs to the quadrennial summer event.
The Philippine team will play their next classification game against West Asian powerhouse Iran on September 8 at the Mastercard Arena (formerly Wukesong Arena) in Beijing, China.
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