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Palace: Gilas should be admired for ‘grit and passion’

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By Genalyn Kabiling

Gilas Pilipinas was “outplayed and outscored” by Italy in its 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup debut but should still be admired for “grit and passion,” Malacañang said Saturday.

Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo (OPS / MANILA BULLETIN)

Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo
(OPS / MANILA BULLETIN)

Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo has praised the Philippine basketball team for showing “flashes of brilliance” despite the loss to the Italians.

Italy inflicted a crushing defeat on the Philippine team, winning 108-62 during the opening game of FIBA tournament in Foshan, China where President Duterte was among the spectators. Duterte showed support for Gilas Pilipinas by watching the game, which he earlier predicted local team would be beaten by the Italians.

‘PRRD patiently watched the game as the Filipino players valiantly fought their taller, bigger, shiftier and sharp-shooting Italians. In the end, we were outplayed and out-scored but not without displaying some flashes of brilliance, although few and far between,” Panelo said.

“It’s not always the winning that counts, it’s how the game is played. Our Filipino players played with grit and passion. And for that they deserve our admiration,” he added.

After watching the FIBA game, the President is expected to return to the country Sunday.

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