Gilas Pilipinas suffered yet another major blow as Roger Pogoy will be doubtful when it sees action in the sixth window of the FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers on Friday and Monday at the Philippine Arena in Bulacan.
TNT Tropang Giga head coach Jojo Lastimosa said the Cebuano hotshot will be out in the coming days after suffering an ankle injury during their 111-104 victory over Meralco in the Philippine Basketball Association Governors’ Cup last Friday.
Pogoy was brought to a nearby hospital with team doctors measuring his pain level from eight to 10.
Gilas Pilipinas is having difficulty bringing in its mainstays for its game against Lebanon on Friday and Jordan on Monday.
Japeth Aguilar is dealing with a knee injury while Poy Erram underwent knee operation.
Also missing in action will be Kai Sotto and Carl Tamayo, who just signed up with new teams in the Japan B. League.
Without Pogoy, who has been regularly attending the Gilas training every Monday at the Meralco Gym in Pasig, national team head coach Chot Reyes lost not only a deadeye gunner, but also one of the team’s best on-ball defenders.
“He’s out versus San Miguel but he’ll be fine in the next few days,” Lastimosa told Daily Tribune on Sunday morning – a few hours before the Tropang Giga take on the Beermen to decide who will take the solo lead in the ongoing season-ending conference.
Lastimosa, however, clarified that Pogoy would definitely be back in action when they play in the East Asia Super League Champions Week that will be held in Utsunomiya and Okinawa in Japan from 1 to 5 March.
The Tropang Giga will be bracketed with the Seoul SK Knights, Utsunomiya Brex and Commissioner’s Cup runner-up Bay Area Dragons in the inaugural staging of the prestigious regional event.
The other PBA club in the EASL will be San Miguel, which is bracketed with Anyang KGC, Taipei Fubon Braves, and Ryukyu Golden Kings.