Reid still leads Hong Kong

Joaquin Henson - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines —  A familiar face to Filipino fans will lead Hong Kong against Gilas in the FIBA Asia Cup qualifying first window at the Tsuen Wan Sports Centre, New Territories tonight. Duncan Reid, who played in 23 games with Bay Area in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup last season, has been a Hong Kong fixture since 2013 and remains the national team’s icon.

Reid, 34, was born and raised in Hong Kong. His father is Canadian and he attended the University of Guelph in Ontario. The 6-8 three-time FIBA Asia Cup vet saw action in two Chinese league seasons and averaged 8.5 points and 6.8 rebounds for Hong Kong at the Asian Games last year. Other Hangzhou holdovers are 6-1 New York City-born Oliver Xu, 5-10 Ricky Yang and 6-3 Shiu Wah Leung. Xu, 27, played in 14 games for Rice University, the Houston, Texas, D1 school that produced Iran’s Arsalan Kazemi and NBA players Trey Murphy and Ricky Pierce. Yang, 25, is a two-time Asian Gamer.

Hong Kong’s reconstituted squad includes players who are returning to action after a long layoff and several newcomers. Chi Lok So, 34, played for the Hong Kong Eastern Long Lions in 2017-18 then reemerged to suit up in the pre-qualifiers. Lung Tak Tsoi, 35, played in the 2014 Asian Games then joined the pre-qualifiers. Tsz Kin Tam and Tsz Him Wong, both 28, were World University Games teammates in 2017 and are making their national squad debut.

Hong Kong is one of eight squads that survived an 18-team FIBA Asia Cup regional pre-qualifiers. Hong Kong beat Singapore, 74-50 and Malaysia, 71-66 to advance from the East Region. Hong Kong, Chinese Taipei, New Zealand and Gilas are in Group B of the FIBA Asia Cup qualifiers where 16 of 24 teams will make it to the final tournament in Saudi Arabia on Aug. 5-17, 2025.

In their last two face-offs, Gilas trounced Hong Kong, 67-55 at the FIBA Asia Cup in 2013 and 101-50 at the FIBA Asia Cup in 2015. Japeth Aguilar played in 2013 but not in 2015 and will suit up tonight. The other 2013 veteran June Mar Fajardo is in Hong Kong but unable to play as he recovers from a calf injury.

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