* The RP National Team just finished 9th overall in the 2007 FIBA-Asia Men’s Basketball tournament. After 17 long years, & 5 National Teams since our pros started competing in major international competitions, we’re still nowhere near our goal of finishing AT LEAST no. 2 in a major Asian Basketball tournament. If anything, not only are we not going nearer that goal, we are even getting FARTHER from it.
* In the past, all we had to worry about in terms of competition in Basketball were CHINA & SOUTH KOREA. JAPAN would occassionally challenge us every now & then, but not that much. But the game has changed a LOT now in Asia, since around the year 2000 the middle-eastern & far eastern european teams started exerting their might in basketball. If you look at the tough teams now, you can add QATAR, JORDAN, IRAN & KAZAKHSTAN.
* What made these middle eastern & far eastern european teams so formidable, is that they have something we don’t: HEIGHT. This is really bad news for the Philippines. Whereas in the past, we could hope to target to be at least no. 2 in Asia, now we would be lucky if we end up in the top 5. Because of that, am giving up any hope that we will ever be anywhere near 2nd place in Asia soon. It just seems so remote now. Reaching the top 5 in Asia will already be a major, major struggle for us now.
* As far as I’m concerned, even w/ a favorable bracketing, the Philippines could’ve finished no higher than 6th place with CHINA TEAM B, & 7th place w/ CHINA TEAM A in the tournament. IRAN, LEBANON, SOUTH KOREA, JORDAN, KAZAKHSTAN & CHINA TEAM A are ahead of us regardless of which bracketing we are put on. I feel we have a good chance of beating TAIWAN, JAPAN & maybe QATAR. We can still beat teams like IRAN, LEBANON & SOUTH KOREA, but only in minor tournaments they don’t take as seriously as we do & are willing to lose in it.