LIVE UPDATES: Philippines vs Cambodia – SEA Games 2023 men’s basketball finals

May 17, 2023

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MANILA, Philippines – One win away from reclaiming the throne.

Fresh from a gutsy 84-76 come-from-behind win over last year’s tormentor Indonesia, Gilas Pilipinas seeks to recapture the gold medal it lost last year when it goes up against the naturalized player-laden host Cambodia in the 32nd Southeast Asian Games men’s basketball finals on Tuesday, May 16.

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This will be the second meeting between Philippines and Cambodia, which has five naturalized players from the United States, in this year’s SEA Games as the two teams have already faced each other in the group phase, where the Cambodians defeated the Filipinos, 79-68.

Tempers flared between both squads during their first encounter as Cambodia head coach Harry Savaya called a timeout with his team up by 10 with only 20 seconds remaining. Savaya also made the “night night” gesture popularized by Golden State Warriors superstar Steph Curry, thus earning the ire of the Filipinos.

After Gilas Pilipinas got its sweet payback versus the defending champion Indonesia just less than a day ago, expect the Filipinos, bannered by lone naturalized player Justin Brownlee, to do the same against Cambodia and exact its revenge in the competition’s biggest stage.

All eyes will once again be on Brownlee, who finally erupted for a SEA Games-high 34 points on Monday, to show the way for the Philippines and hold his own against Cambodia’s high-scoring trio of Brandon Peterson, Sayeed Pridgett, and Darrin Dorsey.

Also count on Brandon Ganuelas-Rosser, who has been a revelation for Gilas Pilipinas in this year’s SEA Games, as well as Arvin Tolentino, to continue their solid play and backstop Brownlee against Cambodia. 

Will Gilas Pilipinas complete its title-redemption bid or will Cambodia capture its first men’s 5×5 basketball gold?

Game time is 4 pm, Manila time. –

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