Gilas Pilipinas women during the 30th Southeast Asian Games
Philstar.com/Luisa Morales
Gilas women strengthen call for women's pro league
Luisa Morales (Philstar.com) - July 16, 2020 - 2:49pm

MANILA, Philippines – Members of the Gilas Pilipinas women's squad are continuing their call for a women’s pro basketball league in the country.

With mainstay Jack Danielle Animam announcing she will be playing as an import for a collegiate team in Taiwan, the Gilas belles couldn't help but wish for a local alternative once they move on from their collegiate careers.

"Sobrang gusto talaga namin magkaroon ng women's league dito sa atin... there's so much talent talaga," Animam said in the recent episode of the Tiebreaker Vods' So She Did podcast.

"There's no avenue to show [our talent] to people and sayang... We have to go pa overseas just to play, kung pwede sana dito na lang sa atin diba?" she added.

Like Animam, Afril Bernardino also headed overseas after her stint with collegiate women's basketball powerhouse NU Lady Bulldogs. She played in Malaysia back in 2018.

She lamented the lack of opportunities for female cagers in the country.

"Kailangan din natin ng kahit na maliit na professional league for women's, syempre after college kasi wala tayong mapupuntahan," Bernardino said.

"Paano naman yun mga tulad natin na mahilig sa basketball ganyan, kumbaga passion na natin yung basketball eh, paano na after college?," she added.

Gilas women center Clare Castro also shared the same sentiments, citing that the only step after their collegiate career was the national team.

"Gusto namin syempre [magkaron ng league] kasi after college, wala na. RP eh hindi naman lahat nakakapag RP eh. Maraming nasasayang na talents kasi walang league after college," Castro said.

Animam also said that a league would widen choices for national team selection and keep players active even during the off seasons of college tournaments.

"Mas widened yung pagpipilian, yung pool for the national team," Animam said.

The Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas Inc. recently said it is planning to set up a pro league for women following the expansion into 3x3 basketball.

The Gilas Pilipinas women's squad recently made history after clinching their first-ever Southeast Asian Games gold medal last December.

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