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Gilas resumes closed-door training

Gilas Pilpinas during the 2017 SEABA Championships here last May | File Photo

MANILA, Philippines — For the fifth straight time, Gilas Pilipinas held its training behind closed doors.

The national team, which is stepping up its preparations for the FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers, practiced with only 13 players at the Meralco Gym in Ortigas on Wednesday morning.

Holdovers from the previous notable editions of the team, Jio Jalalon, Japeth Aguilar and Terrence Romeo, were among the noteworthy absences. Naturalized big man Andray Blatche is set to arrive in the Philippines on November 12.

The Purefoods guard is reportedly nursing an injury while Romeo, who just got back from an overseas promotion tour of his signature sneakers, is yet to rejoin the sessions.

Gabe Norwood, Jayson Castro and June Mar Fajardo lead the crop of veterans. Later additions in Calvin Abueva, Troy Rosario, Allein Maliksi and Raymond Almazan were also in attendance.

The cadets bunch includes Matthew Wright, Roger Pogoy, Carl Bryan Cruz and Mac Belo.

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Second overall pick and NLEX Road Warriors rookie Kiefer Ravena is joined by teammate Louie Alas.

The nationals begin their bid for a spot in the 2019 Basketball World Cup against Japan at the Komazawa Olympic Park General Sports Ground Gymnasium in Tokyo on November 24.

Gilas is currently holding a twice-a-day training session leading up to their first game.

Meralco Gym’s security detail told Philstar.com that Gilas will be taking a break on Thursday.

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