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2023 FIBA World Cup

Kiefer Ravena to be with Gilas for now, says Chot Reyes


Kiefer Ravena was surprisingly part of Gilas Pilipinas Men’s final 12 for their two-game series against Korea on June 17 and 18 at Anyang Gymnasium in Gyeonggi-do.

And for the meantime, the 28-year-old combo guard will be playing for Gilas in the foreseeable future — including the third window of the 2023 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers.

2021-22-B.League-season-Toyama-vs-Shiga-Kiefer-Ravena-2 Kiefer Ravena to be with Gilas for now, says Chot Reyes 2023 FIBA World Cup Basketball Gilas Pilipinas News  - philippine sports news

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“Hindi ko alam e pero when we cleared with the PBA, sabi nila okay so we included him in the lineup. I don’t know what his situation is with NLEX,” said Gilas program director Chot Reyes after TNT’s escape of Converge in Antipolo.

“As of now, yeah, that’s the plan.”

Ravena has been at a standstill with NLEX.

The 6-foot guard out of Ateneo wanted to play with the Road Warriors for just the Philippine Cup before returning to Shiga. However, NLEX countered, saying that they want the second generation cager to play for one whole season.

But needing a veteran presence for the young Gilas team, Ravena was called up.

For the friendlies, also called up for Gilas service are RJ Abarrientos, SJ Belangel, Geo Chiu, Dave Ildefonso, Angelo Kouame, Lebron Lopez, William Navarro, Dwight Ramos, and Carl Tamayo, along with neophytes Rhenz Abando and Kevin Quiambao.

2021-fiba-oqt-belgrade-serbia-def-gilas-heading-x-tamayo-x-sotto-x-go Kiefer Ravena to be with Gilas for now, says Chot Reyes 2023 FIBA World Cup Basketball Gilas Pilipinas News  - philippine sports news

Photo from FIBA.basketball

For Reyes, this will be a good test for the young guns and Gilas head coach Nenad Vucinic.

“Well, like I said, that’s the lineup that matagal na natin naman gusto talaga yung lineup ng mga bata di ba? We want to have a lot of young guys to see who can make it to the final lineup come 2023,” said Reyes, who steered the Philippines to a silver medal in the 31st Southeast Asian Games.

“This is an excellent opportunity also for Coach Nenad to get more assimilated into how we do things, understanding how the Filipino player is and the Filiipino players understanding him as well. This is all part of the process.”

And most likely, this will also be the team that will face the Tall Blacks on the road on June 30 and India on July 3.

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“From the Korea friendlies and this upcoming window, we are going to know a lot about the guys who are in the lineup. As I said, the whole objective of this entire process is to assemble the best possible team for the World Cup next year. This is all part of the process,” he said.

“Sometimes matatalo tayo, we are going to lose big maybe but at least nasasabak ang mga bata. That’s the best way for them to face international competition. They are going to New Zealand, facing a very veteran team at home. What can be a bigger challenge for Carl Tamayo, SJ Belangel, Ange Kouame than that? They are going to grow a lot from that experience.”

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