Chot Reyes yesterday announced he is stepping aside as head coach of Gilas Pilipinas.
In his Instagram account, Reyes said “it is time for me to step aside and contribute in a different capacity, focusing on the 2023 program”.
He said he came out of retirement to coach Gilas “because MVP (Manny V. Pangilinan) asked me back in Oct 2016. I accepted because I have complete trust in MVP's judgment and because it was an opportunity to serve the country.”
He added, “Now that the PBA has opened its doors fully to the SBP (Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas) and the national team, it is time for me to step aside and contribute in a different capacity”.
“We wish coach Yeng and the current team great success as they continue the World Cup journey,” Reyes added in his post.
Al Panlilio, president of the sport’s national governing body, said the SBP “wishes to thank Chot Reyes for his dedication and service to the national team. We appreciate all the sacrifices you have given for the sake of flag and country.”
Last year, the SBP secured rights to co-host the 2023 FIBA World Cup with Indonesia and Japan and it has a program in place called “23 for ’23,” which aims to develop a select group of players in time for that tournament. The program is Reyes’ brainchild, ABS-CBN News reported.
Reyes last coached the national team, nicknamed Gilas Pilipinas, on July 2 when the Philippines lost 89-53 to Australia in a 2019 FIBA World Cup qualifying game at Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan, the report added.
That game was called late in the third quarter after a free-for-all erupted between the two sides, which led to FIBA ordering the suspension of 10 Filipino players, assistant coach Jong Uichico and Reyes.
Reyes’ suspension, set at one game, was to cover the Philippines’ trip to Tehran, the start of the second round of World Cup qualifiers. But the SBP tapped Yeng Guiao to coach the Filipinos away to Iran on Thursday, then Qatar at Araneta Coliseum on Monday.*
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