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Edu to absorb Cone system like sponge


AJ Edu was in attendance but was limited into a mere observer when Gilas Pilipinas trained for the first time with Tim Cone as its full-time coach.

Cone said although Edu arrived in the country from Japan a few days ago, he already made it clear that he will not be seeing action in the first window of the FIBA Asia Cup Qualifiers due to a knee injury.

“He will not play in this window,” Cone told Daily Tribune in a Viber message.

“He’s here to watch and absorb what we do so that he can be ready for the second window.”

With Edu out, Japeth Aguilar was given another tour of duty despite announcing that he is already retiring from international action shortly after the country clinched the gold medal in the 19th Asian Games last year.

Cone said Aguilar couldn’t refuse the golden opportunity to serve the country anew.

“We feel very fortunate to have Japeth,” said Cone, who also handles Aguilar at Barangay Ginebra in the Philippine Basketball Association.

“For the first window, Japeth will take his place.”

The training camp opened on Monday in which Japan B. League stalwarts Dwight Ramos, Kai Sotto and Carl Tamayo, Philippine Basketball Association standouts Scottie Thompson, Jamie Malonzo, Chris Newsome, Calvin Oftana as well as University Athletic Association of the Philippines champion and Most Valuable Player Kebvin Quiambao were in attendance.

June Mar Fajardo and CJ Perez, two key members of the newly-crowned Commissioner’s Cup champion San Miguel Beer,  are also expected to take part while volunteer players from Barangay Ginebra like veteran LA Tenorio and rookies Donald Gumaru and Ralph Coo, provided extra bodies for the national squad.

“We have a great mix of youth and veterans and everyone picks up everything quickly. It’s a joy to watch so far,” Cone said.

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