Palestine breaks Gilas Pilipinas in 2015 FIBA Asia Champinoship prelims

Today Philippines national basketball team Gilas Pilipinas recorded its first loss in the preliminary round of 2015 FIBA Asia Championship, giving Palestine’s first win. The Filipino squad scored 73 while Palestine scored 75 in a game initially dominated by Gilas. Philippines will be facing Hong Kong tomorrow morning and Kuwait on September 25 for the prelims, Group B.

Top 3 in Group B will be facing the top 3 in Group A for the second round. Group A is composed of Iran, Japan, Malaysia and India.

The 2015 FIBA Asia Champinoship is being held in Hunan, China from September 23 and will run until October 3. Winning team will qualify for the 2016 Summer Olympics, while the next three best teams will proceed to 2016 FIBA World Olympic Qualifying Tournament for Men.

FIBA ranked Philippines third in its final edition of the Power Ranking, a day before the tournament started. “After a week of relative seclusion in Cebu, Gilas Pilipinas looks ripe and ready to be a prime challenger in Changsha,” FIBA said in its Power Ranking

“Andray Blatche has reportedly slimmed down a little bit and looks pretty lithe. Whether that’s true or not is still up in the air, but what’s certain is he’ll be one of the toughest match-ups in the tournament,” it added.