Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

Tiebreaker Times


Raul Soyud to relish ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ opportunity with Gilas

Raul Soyud was never the best of the bunch.

In fact, prior to being drafted in the 2014 PBA Rookie Draft, Soyud finished his collegiate career as part of a 0-14 University of the Philippines squad.

Then in the draft itself, the 6-foot-6 banger was selected as the 31st overall pick.

Fast forward to seven years later, Soyud was selected into an exclusive club of elite basketball players – Gilas Pilipinas. And for him, it’s a dream realized.

“Sobrang nagulat kasi hindi ko ine-expect na makasali ako dun. Isang karangalan na ma-invite sa ganung pool na naglalaro ‘yung magagaling na player,” the 30-year-old out of Bago City told Sidelines.

“Once-in-a-lifetime na opportunity siya, kaya hindi ko na pinakawalan.”

For seven years, Soyud had to grind just to stay in the PBA.

Though spending the majority of his career with NLEX, he hardly cracked the main rotation of the Road Warriors from 2014 to 2019.

“Wala siyang reklamo, kahit madalas mapagalitan. He was really determined to get better,” NLEX head coach Yeng Guiao told the team’s official Facebook page.

His hard work eventually paid off inside the PBA bubble.

Soyud posted career-highs of 10.0 points and 6.82 board. And he was a picture of efficiency as he shot a lights-out 73.8-percent from the field – a league-high.

Safe to say, those numbers earned him a Gilas invite. He learned about the development when he signed his two-year extension with NLEX on his birthday.

“Nung pumirma ako ng contract, sinabihan ako ni Boss Ronald [Dulatre] na ininvite daw ako ni Coach Tab [Baldwin] na sumama sa Gilas pool para mag-ensayo,” Soyud bared.

“Sobrang tuwang-tuwa ako nun. Hindi ko akalain na mapupunta ako dun. Halos lahat ng player sa Pilipinas, pinangarap na ma-invite sa national team.”

A former Gilas head coach himself, Guiao believes that Soyud will be of great help to the national team, especially against Indonesia’s Lester Prosper and Korea’s Ricardo Ratliffe.

“His rugged, physical play against opponents bigger than him will be valuable for Gilas, and he can hit the outside shots. He can make those shots when you leave him open.”

#ReadMore  At age 72, Robert Jaworski throws name if 'Return of the Rivals' gets a sequel
Written By

Tiebreaker Times Logo

You May Also Like


The top performers of the 2019 PBA season and the 2020 bubble campaign get their well-deserved recognition on Sunday during the PBA Press Corps...


Both the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas and the Philippine Basketball Association are set to discuss once more the participation of Gilas Pilipinas in the...

2020 Tokyo Olympics

Gilas PIlipinas looks to enter another bubble from March 15 to April 15 to resume preparations for the tough grind awaiting them in the...

2019 FIBA World Cup Qualifiers

Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas executive director Sonny Barrios said that FIBA is looking to stage the 2021 Asia Cup Qualifiers’ third window in Clark...


At just 23 years old, Angelo Kouame will have the tough task of filling the shoes of Gilas big men Marcus Douthit and Andray...


Jordan Heading is full of excitement now that he is about to realize his childhood dream of playing for Gilas Pilipinas Men. The Fil-Australian...

2021 FIBA Asia Cup

Kiefer Ravena has plenty of confidence in Gilas Pilipinas’ chances in the 2021 FIBA Asia Cup Qualifiers’ third window, strongly believing that his team...

2020 Tokyo Olympics

Kiefer Ravena hopes that Gilas Pilipinas will be able to prepare ‘as soon as possible for the FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Belgrade, Serbia....