Gilas Pilipinas Men will be adding three veteran tacticians to its coaching staff for the upcoming February window of the 2021 FIBA Asia Cup qualifiers.
Joining head coach Jong Uichico and program director Tab Baldwin are Meralco Bolts head coach Norman Black, Rain or Shine head coach Caloy Garcia, and Gilas Youth mentor Sandy Arespacochaga. The development was first reported by Spin.ph.
Black first served national team duty as an assistant to Robert Jaworski at the 1990 Asian Games in Beijing before taking over at the 1994 Asian Games in Japan. He also called the shots for the Sinag Pilipinas team that won the gold in the 2011 Southeast Asian Games. He was also an assistant under coach Chot Reyes at the 2013 FIBA Asia Championship, 2014 FIBA World Cup and the first few windows of the 2019 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers.
"I am happy to be a member of the RP team once again, and I'm looking forward to helping in any way I can in preparation for the next FIBA window. It will be a tough challenge but I think we can get the job done," Black told ESPN5.
Garcia, on the other hand, will be reprising his role in the 2019 FIBA World Cup under coach Yeng Guiao.
"I'm grateful to be given the opportunity to be part of Gilas again. I will do what I can to help the team in any capacity that I can and the same time to get more knowledge from the coaches," mentioned Garcia.
Lastly, Arespacochaga will be rejoining the coaching staff after skipping the second window. He was part of Mark Dickel's staff in the first window.
The three will be heading to the bubble inside INSPIRE Sports Academy in Laguna on Sunday to commence training.
The Philippines will be hosting two groups in the third window in a bubble in Clark, Pampanga, and will face South Korea on Feb. 18 and 22, and Indonesia on Feb. 20. The Philippines currently is atop Group A with a 3-0 record.