Naturalized player Andray Blatche will not be suiting up for the Philippine national men’s basketball team in the upcoming 2017 FIBA Asia Cup as Chot Reyes named his final lineup for the tournament slated in August.
The former NBA player reportedly didn’t agree to terms with the Gilas Pilipinas management as he was worried about security issues in host Lebanon.
Since last year, the US State Department has warned American citizens about traveling to the Middle East country “because of the threats of terrorism, armed clashes, kidnapping, and outbreaks of violence, especially near Lebanon’s borders with Syria and Israel.”
Without Blatche, Reyes will compete in the FIBA Asia Cup with a lineup featuring Jayson Castro, June Mar Fajardo, Calvin Abueva, Japeth Aguilar, Terrence Romeo, Matthew Wright, Raymond Almazan, Jio Jalalon, RR Pogoy, Carl Bryan Cruz, the comebacking Gabe Norwood and Filipino-German Christian Standhardinger who will take the team’s naturalized player slot.
Apart from Blatche, notable players also left out of the roster were Troy Rosario and Allein Maliksi. They were members of the Gilas Pilipinas squad that won the gold in the SEABA Championship last May.
The FIBA Asia Cup will tip off on August 8 in Beirut.