Philippines leaps 11 spots in FIBA ranking from 45th to 34th behind CISK

FIBA Asia's Mythical Five (from left) Jason Castro, Kim Mingoo, Lim Chih-Chieh, Oshin Sahakian and Hamed Hadadi.-- FIBA Asia photo by Nuki Sabio

Gilas Pilipinas' monumental run in the 27th FIBA Asia Championship has had the Philippines climbing 11 places higher in the latest FIBA Ranking Men released in fiba.com, the world governing body for basketball's official website.

The Philippines, which booked a return to the world basketball stage, leaped from 45th to 34th to become the fourth best team in Asia behind China, Iran and South Korea.

China slipped down a spot to 12th after disappointing fifth place finish but remained as the top Asian team while three-time champion Iran, which fought off a shorthanded Philippine side for the gold medal, remained in place at 20th.

Korea, which settled for third in the recent Asian meet, also improved its ranking from 33rd to 31st while Japan experienced no change in position at 35th.

Asian rivals Qatar and Chinese Taipei on the other hand, slid to 44th and 42nd, respectively. The Qataris, who were led by former Washington Wizards swingman Jarvis Hayes, fell six places while the Taiwanese dropped two spots down.

Team USA continues to be the world's number one followed by Spain, which hosts the 2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup, and Argentina. Rounding out the top five are Lithuania and Greece, who switched positions for fourth and fifth, respectively.

Philippines nips Kazakhstan to kick off Fiba Asia U16 campaign

Philippines kicked off its 2013 Fiba Asia Under 16 campaign with a 90-88 nipping of Kazakhstan at the Azadi Sports Complex in Tehran, Iran.

Michael Dela Cruz led the Filipinos with 19 points off the bench, while Andres Paul Desiderio added 16 points and seven boards and Richard Escoto, 10 points and 19 rebounds.

The Philippine team, which even slightly outrebounded the Kazakhs, 49-48, and performed better in the paint, snatched the lead with 3:13 left to play on a two- pointer from Escoto.

And the Filipinos held on to that slim advantage down the stretch with Kazakhstan missing crucial freethrows and three-pointers.

Next on the Philippines' agenda in the preliminary round is Chinese-Taipei.

Leonid Voronushkin had four triples for game-high 28 points, but in a losing cause for Kazakhstan

Philippines stumbles versus China and Bulgaria in U18 3x3 FIBA Championships

In their first game, versus China, the reigning FIBA Asia 3x3 U18 champs saw all of their players foul out, en route to a 20-0 defeat by default. The Philippines then lost a squeaker, 12-11, to Bulgaria, to give them a 3-2 card.

Meanwhile the United States continued to dominate Pool B, improving to 5-0. China was close behind with a 4-1 card, while the Philippines fell into a three-team tie with the Czech Republic and Bulgaria.

The Philippine campaign in the pool stage wraps up on Saturday versus the Czech Republic and the United States.

The team is comprised of Arvin Tolentino of San Beda High School, Thirdy Ravena of Ateneo High School, and La Salle Greenhills students Prince Rivero and Kobe Paras.

With report from Inquirer News and GMA News 

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