MANILA, Philippines – Just as it's about to resume its bid for a World Cup berth with a retooled lineup, Team Pilipinas' mettle will already be tested when it squares off against Asian powerhouse Iran.
The Filipinos will be in hostile territory as it tries to pull off an upset against the Iranians in Group F of the fourth window of the 2019 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers at the Azady Gym in Tehran on Thursday, September 13.
The Philippines, which ended the first round of the Qualifiers with a 4-2 record, looks to become the first team to defeat Iran, which boasts a 5-1 card, in its own turf.
Although without Greg Slaughter to match up with former NBA player Hamed Haddadi, Philippine team head coach Yeng Guiao has not lost confidence. (READ: Team Pilipinas has 'pretty good chance' vs Iran, says Yeng)
The Nationals will also be banking on the element of surprise, with 10 players from their 12-man lineup debuting in the Qualifiers. (READ: No Slaughter in Gilas final 12 as Thompson, Cabagnot suit up)
Game time is at 8:30 pm (Philippine time).
Follow Rappler's live coverage of the game below: