Wei Long on Castro: ‘It is really good to play against the top point guards in Asia’

Wong Wei Long - Singapore

Singapore point guard Wong Wei Long had the opportunity to go up against the region’s top-level point guards when his country faced Gilas Pilipinas on Saturday night in the on-going 2017 SEABA Championships in Manila.

Wei Long went up against Jayson Castro, a two-time FIBA Asia Championship all-star five member, and PBA scoring champion Terrence Romeo.

The Singaporean playmaker obviously had a tough time, although he still managed to put up 12 points on 4-of-11 shooting and 4-of-4 shooting from the foul line. He did commit five turnovers.

After the game, Wei Long spoke about the experience, saying he felt privileged playing the Gilas backcourt stars.

“I think it is really good to play against the top point guards in Asia. It was definitely something I look forward to everyday. You don’t get this opportunity everytime. I am glad I am here, to play them, to know who they are,” Wei Long said.

Gilas dominated Singapore, 113-66, but Wei Long felt such challenge from Gilas is only vital for the team’s continuous growth.

“For me, I definitely liked the intensity,” Wei Long said of Gilas’ physicality. “It was great to play against the best player in Asia. I like to play them more. That would actually help improve my game.”

For their part, Singapore actually had five players score in double-digits. They even shot better than the Philippines from three-point area at 36.4 percent.

Seeing the entire team step up, Wei Long hopes they can play the same way in their next few games. Singapore has not yet won a game in the tournament after two tries.

“For the future, the younger players really stepped up. This will actually boost our confidence for the next couple of games. It is something I am looking forward to in the next couple of games. I hope they can give that level of intensity,” Wei Long said, adding he saw positives in the loss.

“To a certain extent. We ran what our coaches wanted to do. We didn’t execute yesterday. Today we were more focused and we ran plays. This is good preparation for the games (to come).”

Singapore head coach Franco Arsego himself praised Gilas for their masterful performance and even said he plans bringing his team back to the country just to get the kind of competition Gilas showcases, which in turn would help them in their quest to finish with a medal in the Southeast Asian Games.

“I wish them the best of luck in the qualifiers. We are all inspired by these opportunities and I think we are very blessed to have this sort of competition in this region. I know because I always come to the Philippines. There is great hospitality and great basketball,” Arsego said.

“To be honest, I am looking to bring the team back in July for the preparation for the SEA Games. I’m gonna bring the boys back for our build-up. That’s the kind of competition we need so yeah, giving love and respect to the Philippines when it comes to basketball.”

Written by Levi Verora Jr
Photos by Glenn Michael Tan

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