MANILA, Philippines — Justin Brownlee, along with three other newcomers and one returning banner, round out Gilas Pilipinas’ talent pool for the sixth and final window of the FIBA World Cup Asian qualifiers scheduled for next month.
Brownlee, La Salle’s Shawnee Winston, Adamson’s Jerome Lastimosa and Mason Amos have been added to the list released by the Philippine Basketball Association on Friday afternoon.
Fresh from swearing allegiance to the Philippine flag earlier this week, Brownlee, now Filipino, is expected to carry the banner for the Final 12 that will defend home turf against Jordan and Lebanon.
Joining the four are Philippine Basketball Association standouts who previously represented and coached the national team: Most Valuable Player Scotty Thompson, six-time MVP Jon Mar Fajardo, CJ Perez, Chris Newsome, Roger Pogoy, Jamie Malonzo, Calvin Otana, Japheth Aguilar, Raymond Almazan and Irwin Tolentino.
The group also features young professionals plying their trade overseas: Kai Soto, Thirdy and Kiefer Rowena, Ray Parks. Jr. Dwight Ramos, Jordan Heading, and Carl Tamayo to Japan.
The list includes other naturalized aces Ange Koome of Gilas, Kevin Quimbeau of La Salle, and Francis Lopez.
The call-up marks a return for Almazan, Tolentino and Heading. The latter suited up for the Tab Baldwin-led squad that competed in the Asia Cup qualifiers here and the Olympic qualifiers in Serbia.
Meanwhile, Amos will be anticipating what could be his men’s team debut. After reportedly joining the Blue Eagles, the 6-foot-8 big man should shore up the glass ceiling against the towering Falcons and Cedars.
The Nationals are set to resume their weekly practices on January 23 in preparation for two homestands that will be played at the Cavern Philippine Arena in Bulacan.
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