Gilas battle with Korea set next year

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    GILAS Pilipinas is set to tackle an old nemesis twice in the third window of the 2021 FIBA Asia Cup qualifiers next year at home.

    The Philippines and South Korea clash on Feb. 18, a reset of their initial match that was called off in the second window in Manama, Bahrain last month, in Clark in Group A action of the final window of the qualifiers to be played in a bubble, according to a schedule released by the FIBA.

    The nationals battle Indonesia on Feb. 20 and then South Korea anew on Feb. 22.

    The FIBA, however, has yet to release the time and venue for those matches.

    South Korea pulled out from the second window due to the health risks posed by the COVID-19 pandemic and will square off with Indonesia on Feb. 19 and Thailand a day after.

    The Indonesians and the Thais tangle for the last time on Feb. 22.

    An all-amateur Gilas Pilipinas side completed a two-game sweep of Thailand in the November window to pace Group A with a 3-0 record.

    Coming off a successful hosting of the PBA Philippine Cup bubble capped by Ginebra winning its first import-less crown in 13 years against TNT 4-1 last Dec. 9, Clark was chosen by the FIBA as one of the four cities that will host the final window of the qualifiers.
    The others were Tokyo, Manama, and Doha. Clark will also host Group C matches pitting Australia, New Zealand, Guam, and Hong Kong.

    Tokyo will host Group B games, which has Japan, Chinese Taipei, Malaysia, and China.

    Manama will still host Group D, which is composed of Lebanon, Bahrain, India, and Iraq, and will now have Group F, which has Jordan, Kazakhstan, Palestine, and Sri Lanka.

    Doha will have Group E games for Iran, Syria, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia.

    After the second window, Lebanon and Bahrain qualified for the FIBA Asia Cup.