Dwight Ramos
Dwight Ramos excited to represent Philippines in FIBA Asia Cup Qualifiers
Rick Olivares (Philstar.com) - February 20, 2020 - 1:41pm

MANILA, Philippines — Growing up in West Covina, California, Dwight Ramos would follow the Philippine men’s basketball team in their various iterations and competitions. Even while living abroad, he felt a lot of Philippine pride as Gilas, as the Nationals are nicknamed, brought glory to the country.

And now, years later, the 21-year-old Ramos, who stands six-foot-five, will be donning the national colors himself when Gilas takes on Indonesia in the FIBA Asia Cup Qualifiers in Jakarta on February 23.

Interestingly, Ramos is the only player in the 12-man lineup who is still in college. Ramos is currently enrolled at Ateneo de Manila University and will be seeing action in the upcoming summer leagues and UAAP Season 83. He previously suited up for Cal State Fullerton for two years before moving to the Philippines.

And even more interesting is how Gilas has a marked blue and white flavor. Of the 12 players with seven in the professional ranks, nine have an Ateneo connection. Included are former Blue Eagles JP Erram, Justin Chua, Kiefer Ravena, Isaac Go, Thirdy Ravena and Matt Nieto. CJ Perez also played for Ateneo while Juan Gomez de Liaño went to the Loyola Heights-based school for his elementary years.

Rounding out the rest of the squad are Abu Tratter, Troy Rosario and Roger Pogoy.

“I’m excited to play for a country,” gushed Ramos the day the roster for the qualifiers was announced. “It’s really a different feeling (as opposed to watching on television). And I will be playing for millions of people who support the team. Back in the States, I would follow how they would be doing in international competitions. Then this opportunity came up and I am just happy.”

Ramos’ parents are arriving to support their son and Dwight cannot wait to share the news with them. “I’m sure they’ll be happy for me.”

Local fans got their first look at Ramos and his younger brother Eli play for the Blue Eagles in BBI and PCCL competition. “I still have a lot to improve on before the UAAP and I’ll be working on those facets.”

The Philippines is bracketed with Indonesia, Thailand and South Korea in Group A.

Tip-off between Gilas and Indonesia will be at 7 p.m. on February 23 at the Britama Arena in Jakarta.

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