This was what coach Yeng Guiao of Gilas Pilipinas provided on Sunday night after the Philippines failed to win even a single game in the 2019 FIBA World Cup.
A 95-75 rout at the hands of ancient Asian rival Iran finished a brutal Filipinos World Cup tour that saw them lose their matches by an average 29.4 points margin. Only against Angola they were truly competitive, losing in overtime to the African country, 84-81.
“Well, of course, first of all, we’re very sorry we haven’t been able to perform to the point they’re expecting,” Guiao said to Iran after their loss.
Gilas began the tournament on a bad note, scored 37-8 against Italy in the first quarter of their first match. They lost, 102-68, then fell in their second match to Serbia, 126-67. They were motivated by Angola’s near defeat, but never succeeded in winning that breakthrough.Tunisia also outclassed them last Friday, 86-67, and while in the first quarter they gave Iran a hard task, the Asian powerhouse ultimately withdrew from the Philippines as well.Guiao did not want to apologize for the terrible outcomes, but he also noted that during the lead-up to the World Cup, the conditions were not kind to Gilas Pilipinas.
Untimely injuries to Marcio Lassiter and Matthew Wright stopped Gilas from getting their greatest shooters in the line-up — something they paid for powerfully as they struggled throughout the tournament with their perimeter shooting.
Guiao further observed that some players, particularly veteran guard Jayson Castro, begged off the national team pool.
Their preparation was far from ideal as well. Guiao wanted to have a longer training camp and participate in the William Jones Cup for Gilas, but none of the plans materialized.
The national team is set to arrive early Tuesday morning in Manila and they are sure to be greeted with many issues about their performance. There was already plenty of criticism lobbied against the team even during the World Cup build-up— noise that can only grow louder after going 0-5 in the tournament.
Guiao said he was willing to answer all the questions and assume all accountability for what occurred in China.