After dispatching Kazakhsatan with the resurgence of Gary David, The Philippines takes on Korea for an outright birth to the finals and the 2014 FIBA World Championships.
Another Good Start
The players showed a very promising start against the Kazakhs which eventually dictated the pace of the entire ballgame. They need to repeat this performance against the taller and more agile players from K-Pop country. Controlling the paint will be key in deciding this semifinal matchup.
South Korea is a well-oiled machine as the team runs through their plays efficiently and always find the best shot in a possession. Star of the team is Sung-min Cho (#10 G/F) who’s an inside-outside threat together with Ho-Young Yun (#9 F) Seung-Jun Lee (#14 F/C) form a triple-threat. Manning the middle are the tag team combination Joo-Sung Kim and (#11 F/C) Jong-Kyu Kim (#12 F/C) tall lanky guys with great jumping ability. Korea has a good rotation of guards that can come in and contribute right away. Because of their efficiency and sound basketball fundamentals, anyone in the team can inflict damage to the opponent.
The Nationals should carry over their good defensive performance. Gilas should quickly adjust to the pace of the Korean Pick & Roll + Motion offense. If they figure out the switching of Korea, there is a big chance that they can win convincingly. It is critical for Aguilar and Douthit to limit their personal fouls against the Koreans.
Everything clicked for us against Kazakhstan outside. Timely 3 point bombs from David, William, and Norwood took the Kazakhs by surprise. The performance should certainly work to our advantage and will give our bigs the chance to carve the paint. A good balance of inside/outside will bring us to the finals.
Playing against a tough opponent is not that bad when you’re at home. Expect the crowd to really be a factor in today’s matchup. With the momentum on our side and the sense of urgency on the players, I am expecting a victory tonight which will exorcise the demons of the past.