by Jonas Terrado
Andray Blatche sees the series of tune-up games in Spain next month as an opportunity to gauge his game shape before Gilas Pilipinas heads to China for the FIBA World Cup.
Blatche has spent the past weeks taking part in practices of not only Gilas but also NLEX while doing personal work with national team trainer Dexter Aseron in order to get his conditioning on the right track.
“These warm-up games in Spain will see exactly where I am and just go from there,” Blatche said during Friday’s press conference of the FIBA World Cup Trophy Tour at the Lopez Building of the Meralco compound.
“But I’ve been putting the work with NLEX, work with Dex (Aseron) and a couple of times with Gilas so it really boils down to Spain,” added the former NBA player.
Gilas coach Yeng Guiao is confident that Blatche can get himself in shape by the time the Nationals play their first World Cup game against Italy on Aug. 31 in Foshan.
“He’s been very consensus with his practices and he’s been taking his sessions very seriously. So I have no doubts that he will be in game shape by the time we play in China,” Guiao said.
“Of course he mentioned that the Spain trip would be really crucial because that will give him a good indication of how hard he has to work the rest of the days that we’re preparing for the World Cup. So I’m not worried, he’s a professional and he will get into game shape by the time we play in China,” added Guiao.