GUANGZHOU—A hurting Solomon Mercado still made it to the 12-man Smart Gilas Pilipinas lineup that coach Rajko Toroman will be fielding for the Asian Games basketball competition starting here tomorrow.
Mercado, the Rain or Shine guard, got the clearance to play despite suffering a contusion on his left ankle and joined fellow PBA stars Asi Taulava of Meralco and Talk N Text’s Kelly Williams in the final roster.
Smart Gilas team captain Chris Tiu, JV Casio, Mark Barroca, Greg Slaughter Mac Baracael, Japeth Aguilar, Jason Ballesteros and overseas-based players Marcio Lassiter and Chris Lutz completed the list during the deliberation of the coaching staff Wednesday night.
Wingman Dylan Ababou and slotman Aldrech Ramos failed to make the cut although both players will be watching at the sidelines during the games along with naturalization candidate Marcus Douthit.
“The final lineup is versatile, athletic and quick. Exactly what we need for the Asiad,” said Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas executive director Noli Eala.
The PH five, formed mainly to bring the country back to the Olympics in London 2012, faces Kuwait in the preliminary round tomorrow.