Kiefer Ravena affirms Gilas commitment

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Kiefer Ravena affirms Gilas commitment

John Bryan Ulanday

(Philstar.com) – November 11, 2020 – 7:49pm

CLARK – NLEX guard Kiefer Ravena expressed his willingness to be part of another bubble – this time – with Gilas Pilipinas to join CJ Perez in the list of possible pro-cagers reinforcing the national team for the resumption of the 2021 FIBA Asia Cup Qualifiers in Bahrain this month.

Ravena officially became available Wednesday night after the Road Warriors’ 127-101 win over Northport to end their 2020 Philippine Cup campaign inside the bubble here in Clark, Pampanga on a high note.

He collected 23 points, five rebounds and four assists in his last PBA bubble game as the Road Warriors barely missed the playoffs with 5-6 card at ninth place.

“I’m just waiting and I’ll see kung paano ako makakatulong. From what I saw, it’s CJ (Perez), me and Christian (Standhardinger) to help out the young ones. Tingnan natin pero open naman talaga tayo to helping,” said Ravena as NLEX prepares to leave the bubble Thursday afternoon.

“Kaya pa naman. Hindi naman natin tatanggihan yung opportunity to play for the country,” he added after more than a month of daily grind in the bubble since September 28.

“Kaya pa naman. Hindi naman natin tatanggihan yung opportunity to play for the country.”

In a previous interview with The STAR, Perez already reiterated his readiness to suit in another bubble for the national team as Terrafirma (1-10) also suffered an early exit from the PBA bubble.

With Northport (1-10) also out from All-Filipino contention, Standhardinger is also seen as a possible addition to the Gilas squad made up of cadets Isaac Go, Rey Suerte, Allyn Bulanadi, Mike and Matt Nieto.

Both Ravena and Perez played in the first window of the Asia Cup Qualifiers in an easy 100-70 win over Indonesia last February before the COVID-19 pandemic paralyzed most of the sporting events.

They also bannered the Nationals in the FIBA World Cup last year in Changsha, China.

Standhardinger, meanwhile, has donned national colors multiple times in the past like in the SEA Games, FIBA Asia Cup, FIBA 3×3 World Cup, Asian Games and the FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers.

With a bubble concept now being the model trend in basketball and sports after the success of NBA at the middle of pandemic, FIBA is eyeing to resume the qualifiers at the end of the month in Manama City.

The Philippines holds a 1-0 record in Group A that also includes South Korea (2-0), Thailand (0-1) and Indonesia (0-2).