The Philippine 3×3 basketball team is no longer part of the Philippine delegation seeing action at the 2nd Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing, China after the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) was informed that the PH team has been excluded from taking part because of an inferior world ranking.
Initially, SBP was informed that Philippines has qualified for the August 14 to 18 Olympic games for the youth.
Kobe Paras was enlisted to lead the basketball team, joined by Manuel Mosqueda III, John Paul Cauilan and Amando San Juan II.
But two weeks ago, YOG organizers issued a statement saying that the PH team did not actually meet qualification standards after it has not maintained it’s top 20 ranking in the said sport.
Only teams ranked in the top 20 in the world can join the 2nd Youth Olympic Games.
“The 3-on-3 team should have been active in the last few months to maintain its ranking and because it wasn’t, other teams were able to meet the requirements like Indonesia, which, I have been told, is now rated No. 15,” said POC First Vice-president Joey Romasanta.
Romasanta added that the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) was very apologetic of the gaffe.
The exclusion of the 3×3 basketball team is a big loss to Philippines’ campaign at this year’s YOG since it could possibly deliver a medal for the country.
The PH Golf team, which is another medal potential for team Philippines, was also excluded in the Nanjing games after Philippines was not able to maintain the top 26 World Amateur Golf Rankings.
The National Golf Association of the Philippines though has appealed for the inclusion of the team based on their performance at last year’s Asian Youth Games where Clare Amelia Legaspi and Princess Mary Superal finished first and second in the Girls individual event. No words yet if the appeal has been successful.
With barely two months to go, team Philippines is now left with four athletes, plus two or three more from swimming.
So far only Ava Loren Verdeflor of gymnastics, Victorija Evania Deldio of triathlon, and Luis Gabriel Moreno and Bianca Cristina Gotuaco of archery are confirmed to be part of the Philippine team.
Swimmers Jethro Roberts Chua, Roxanne Ashley Yu and Kirsten Chloe Daos currently awaits final confirmation from FINA after all three have registered YOG qualifying times at a YOG qualifying meet.
Their names were already submitted by Philippine Swimming Incorporated to FINA for final deliberation, and we will know by July 8 (the deadline of entry submission to NYOGOC) if all three have officially made it.