The Gilas Pilipinas will be missing Kai Sotto in the FIBA Asia Cup as the 7-foot-3 center will be heading to Australia to join the Adelaide 36ers in the NBL.
The 19-year old basketball prodigy confirmed this in a post on his social media accounts on early Thursday morning.
“There’s been a lot of speculation about whether I will be joining Gilas for the FIBA Asia Cup this coming August. The SBP and my EWP team have been trying to figure out what is the best balance for the team and my personal development. And for a while I was really hoping that I would be able to join my teammates in Indonesia,” wrote Sotto.
“But as you all know, I already committed to join the NBL starting the 2021/2022 season and I will be in Adelaide on August 1 to start my two week quarantine, get settled and start preparing for preseason activities. Playing in the NBL is a critical step in my basketball journey and now that I have fulfilled my qualifier window and OQT commitments to the National Team, I want to focus on playing well for the Adelaide 36ers and focus 1000% on giving the 36ers all my best,” he continued.
Sotto was a key cog for Gilas in both the FIBA Asia Cup qualifiers and the Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Serbia. The former Ateneo standout averaged 9.3 points, 7.0 rebounds, 1.3 assists, and 1.0 steals in the Clark bubble and then, normed 9.0 points, 4.5 rebounds, 1.5 assists, and 1.5 steals in Serbia.
Sotto vowed to return to Gilas a much better player and cheer for the national team as loudly as possible.
“I will return to the Gilas stronger from playing in Australia. I will pray for all my teammates in their Asia Cup campaign. I’ll be one of their loudest fans!” shared Sotto. (JNP)