Gilas Pilipinas may have failed in the FIBA World Cup but the outpouring support for the Philippine men’s national basketball team earned the nation the Most Valuable Fans (MVF) Best Country award given by the world basketball body.
A video highlighting the Filipino fans was played during the halftime break of the Final as a tribute to the millions of basketball fans from the Philippine team — which competed at the basketball world cup for the first time in 36 years.
The Philippine team enthralled the imagination of many Filipinos in which they were able to come close on knocking off the third ranked Argentina. They also put a good fight with Croatia, Puerto Rico and Greece.
After defeating Senegal, Gilas’s fans celebrated their victory like it’s a championship win even though they have already been eliminated after their match with Puerto Rico. It was the first victory the Philippines ever had at the World Championship since 1974.
FIBA determined the MVF points through using a broad range of social actions (like fans using hastag #Spain2014 on social networks. "All points earned by fans that support the same national team accumulated to determine the MVF Best Country Award," FIBA said in a news item.