Gilas Pilipinas Hosts Fiba Qualifier Home Matches at Philippine Arena
MANILA, Philippines–The Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) on Tuesday announced that the Philippines will conclude the Fiba World Cup Asia Qualifiers at the Philippine Arena in Bulacan.
Gilas Pilipinas will host Lebanon and Jordan at the cave venue next February for the final sixth leg of the tournament being used to prepare for the World Cup in August.
“We’re really scheduled to compete there, regardless of the outcome,” said CEO Sonny Barrios on Tuesday, during the Philippine Sports Writers Association Forum. .
“If you look back, the February term was held at Araneta (Coliseum in Quezon City), August 29 of the fourth term was at the Mall of Asia Arena (in Pasay City) and now this sixth term in the Philippines. Arena because those are the three venues for the World Cup (in August),” he said.
The Philippine Arena, with a capacity of 55,000, is one of three venues that will be used for the global rollout.
Gilas Pilipinas last competed at the Philippine Arena on July 2, 2018, during the 2019 World Cup Qualifiers. is best remembered for the melee that broke out in the third round involving the Australian national team.
Barrios said that competing at the Bulacan venue will also act as a team that will take care of the logistics of the organization.
“It will also be like a (on-site) training for the local organizers for the different locations,” he continued.
Gilas, now on a 5-3 record in Group E, is looking to pay off against the Cedars and a repeat of the Falcons.
The SBP official said admission tickets to Window 6 matches will be cheaper than tickets to World Cup matches.
“I don’t have a specific number, but it’s not far off from how we price (qualifying games). Sure, the configuration (price) of Philippine Arena is different from that of Smart Araneta Coliseum or SM MOA Arena, but I don’t think it will go that far,” Barrios said.
“(The cage heads) have always said that the general admission price should be as reasonable as possible for the benefit of the fans,” he added.
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