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Philippines misses Tokyo Olympics qualifying tournament

The Philippines kept its spot at No. 31 in the FIBA World Rankings, but failed to secure a spot in the qualifying tournament of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics after South Korea moved ahead in the leaderboard.

The updated rankings were released on Thursday afternoon by FIBA.

The Koreans leapfrogged Gilas Pilipinas and are now 30th in the world, which means that they will qualify alongside China for the OQT next year. New Zealand also jumped 12 places to sit at no. 24 to drop the Philippines to fifth in Asia.

The rankings served as basis for identifying the additional eight teams joining the original 16 who qualified for the OQT in the World Cup, with only the two top-ranked teams for every region joining the 24-team field.

China has already qualified for the OQT thanks to their final placing in the World Cup, which left the door open for one other Asian team to enter the pack. This turned out to be Korea based on the FIBA rankings.

Joining the OQT from other continents are Mexico and Uruguay in the Americas, Angola and Senegal in Africa, and Croatia and Slovenia in Europe.

Eleven European teams will comprise most of the OQT field, with Serbia leading the pack alongside early qualifiers Czech Republic, Germany, Greece, Italy, Lithuania, Poland, Russia, and Turkey. Brazil, Canada, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico and Venezuela, meanwhile, have also qualified beforehand for Americas.

Rounding out the original 16 are Tunisia and New Zealand.

Meanwhile atop the standings, United States still retained its top spot despite a seventh-place finish. Australia jumped eight places to now sit at no. 3, while Argentina moved ahead of France to rank fourth. France and Serbia were pegged down a notch at nos. 5 and 6.

Greece, Lithuania, Russia and Czech Republic, which rose 14 places, complete the top 10. Tunisia (+16, now at no. 33) and Ivory Coast (+16, now at 48) also registered massive jumps in their rankings.

World Cup champions Spain, runners-up Argentina, bronze medalists France, fourth-placers Australia, the United States, Iran, Nigeria, and hosts Japan have booked eight of the 12 tickets to Tokyo 2020.