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Jones Cup stint a good learning experience — Nambatac

If there's anything good Rain or Shine can get from its ongoing campaign in the William Jones Cup, guard Rey Nambatac noted that the team gained a lot of experience that will be beneficial for the Elasto Painters as they head to the PBA's Season 48.

Rey Nambatac (right) PBA PHOTO

Taking a one day break on Friday after playing six games in as many days, Nambatac admitted it was difficult for the team to quickly adjust as ROS faced foreign national teams in the tournament the Philippines last dominated in 2019 under the banner Mighty Sports.

“It was a good learing experience for us because almost all the teams joining here are either national team A or B. And we know when we say national team, the first thing that comes to your mind are the players of that country,” Nambatac told The Manila Times in Filipino.

The former Letran top gun said Rain or Shine's five losses in six games thus far were all attributed to the team's failure to start well in the tournament that implements the FIBA rules.

“We can compete against these teams but what we just failed to do early was being able to adjust to the international style of play,” explained the 29-year-old ROS shooter.

“We know that in the international tournament, whichever team gets a good start easily gains the momentum and confidence and most likely, gets to dictate the game. And when that happens, the chances of winning becomes higher,” he added.

Nambatac said the Elasto Painters' bad start in previous games have been the main point of coach Yeng Guiao's post-game talks with the team.

Rain or Shine's lone victory thus far, came at the expense of Iran, which the 2016 PBA Commissioner's Cup champion defeated in double overtime, 98-90 last Wednesday.

ROS stumbled to its fifth loss on Thursday following its 87-77 defeat to Korean Basketball League champion Anyang KGC.

Meanwhile, Guiao said each defeat may be a bitter pill to swallow considering that Rain or Shine is representing the Philippines in the tournament.

Yet, the fiery ROS mentor assured Filipino basketball fans that the moment the Elasto Painters step on the floor, they fight till the final buzzer.

“We're just a club team here but at least, we are fighting as we compete against these (foreign) national teams,” said Guiao. “Maybe what Filipino fans don't undersand here is the kind of competition we have here. The only club teams here are our team and the Korean champion (Anyang KGC). And we aren't even a champion team in the Philippines.”

Guiao added that current unbeaten team the UC Irvine is an NCAA Division 1 school that reached the March Madness recently.

“That's why it's that hard to compete here, though I should say, this has been a very good experience for our boys,” he said.

Rain or Shine returns to action on Saturday against Japan's under-22 team, before closing its round-robin Jones Cup stint against UC Irvine on Sunday.

Credit belongs to : www.manilatimes.net

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