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Castro says Blatche "fit enough" for Australia clash as Gilas center makes early return

Andray Blatche already arrived ahead of Gilas' daily practices. Dennis Acosta (file photo)
By Ivan Saldajeno

QUEZON CITY--Andray Blatche is back!

And it's sooner than expected.

Blatche showed up on Sunday night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum during the PBA Philippine Cup games, a little less than two weeks before Gilas Pilipinas flies to Melbourne to face Australia in the FIBA World Cup Qualifiers.

It was later revealed that Blatche was already here since Friday.

Long-time national team player Jayson Castro thinks Blatche, who usually gets into match fitness problems, is already in tip-top shape.

"Fit naman siya eh. Saka pinaghandaan niya yung games versus Australia and Japan," said Castro.

Blatche is expected to join the Gilas practice on Monday as the daily grind for the Feb. 22-25 window begins.