Gilas Pilipinas’ preparations for the FIBA World Cup are once again hindered by injuries, this time affecting TNT’s seasoned center, John Paul “Poy” Erram, who is grappling with an arthritic knee.

According to Gilas’ physical therapist, Dexter Aseron, the 6-foot-8 Erram is under the care of Dr. Marc Castro, a respected Filipino orthopedic surgeon from the Makati Medical Center.

The persistent issue with Erram’s knee has been identified as arthritis, and it has been a cause of concern for the player.

Aseron revealed that they have been carefully managing Erram’s condition, especially given his history of knee surgeries, which he underwent during his UAAP days as part of the Ateneo Blue Eagles.

“He’s had a number of previous surgeries on both knees dating back to college,” shared Aseron, who graduated from the University of Santo Tomas College of Rehabilitation Sciences and currently serves as both Gilas and TNT’s strength and conditioning coach.

While they await Dr. Castro’s final recommendation, they have not ruled out Erram’s participation in the final 12 of the Gilas roster.

The 34-year-old player is presently focused on knee strengthening, and his availability for selection will depend on how he responds to the treatment in the coming days.

Despite this setback, the team remains hopeful that Erram will recover in time to contribute to Gilas Pilipinas’ endeavors. (ai/mnm)