Japeth Aguilar will not be playing for Gilas Pilipinas in the first window of the FIBA Asia Cup qualifiers.
National team program director Tab Baldwin disclosed that the high-flying forward, who got hitched to longtime girlfriend and former beauty queen Cassandra Naidas last October 25, will be on his honeymoon.
“Japeth is out. He has informed us that he is going on a delayed honeymoon. Congratulations to him. It’s always nice to go on a honeymoon. We all wished we could go to another one. He is not available for the first window,” said Baldwin.
Aside from Aguilar, 2019 Governors’ Cup Best Player Christian Standhardinger likewise begged off due to a nagging left knee injury.
“Obviously, Christian has gone through his issue and that’s very real. We understand that. We don’t want to put any player in jeopardy because he is rehabbing an injury and he is on a specific time table. We just have to accept that for this window and understand that,” explained Baldwin.
“The pool is restricted to the 24 that we named. Out of that 24, we’ll end up picking our 12. It isn’t uncommon to have issues with 24 players. Obviously, what’s a little bit alarming is that all of our issues are resting on our big men right now. It’s tough to play without your big men,” he added.
Gilas is set to face Thailand on February 20 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum before taking on Indonesia on the 23rd at the The BritAma Arena in Jakarta.