By Waylon Galvez
Games Today (Philippine Arena, Bocaue, Bulacan)
3:10 p.m. – Brazil vs Philippines
6:40 p.m. – Philippines vs Mongolia
BOCAUE, Bulacan – The Philippine team had only less than a month of training, but Troy Rosario is confident they can pull off a surprise against the finest teams as they open their campaign in the 2018 FIBA 3×3 World Cup today at the Philippine Arena here.
“We’re excited actually to start our bid,” said Rosario, a 6-foot-7 forward who participated in 3×3 action two years ago in the Manila Masters and World Tour in Abu Dhabi.
“We’ve prepared hard for this tournament. Yes, it’s true we had limited time to prepare. But we did our part to get ourselves ready, the team ready for this event,” added Rosario.
The national team plays two matches, as it will tackles Brazil first at 3:10 p.m., before taking on the Mongolians in the final game at 6:40 p.m. of the second day of this tournament.
Aside from Rosario, the team also has his TNT KaTropa teammate RR Pogoy, GlobalPort’s Stanley Pringle, and San Miguel Beer rookie Christian Standhardinger, the top overall pick in the last PBA Rookie Draft, in the squad.
Adjusting on the 3×3 rules is one of the factors that coach Ronnie Magsanoc emphasized to the team members.
The more popular 5-on-5 game – like the PBA – has a 24-second shot clock, while the 3×3 only uses a 12-second per possession shot clock, while the basketball used is smaller at 28.5 inches in circumference in 3×3.
In comparison, the basketball used in 5-on-5 matches measures a little bigger at 29.5 inches.
“There are some adjustments. The game is faster in 3×3 because of the 12-second shot clock. But the key there is not to hurry our shots. These are the things we talked about leading to this event,” said Magsanoc.
Brazil, the sixth seed team, is back on the 3×3 World Cup stage after its last stint in 2014 and it has 6-footer William Evangelista, 6-foot-1 Marcellus Sarmiento, 6-foot-3 Luiz Felipe Soriani and 6-foot-5 Carlos Silva Jr.
As for the 11th-seed Mongolia – No. 11 in the tournament – has 6-foot-2 guard Dulguun Enkhbat, 6-foot-3 forwards Delgernyam Davaasambuu and Tsenguunbayar Gotov and 6-foot-6 Tserenbaatar Enkhtaivan.