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As SEA Games gold streak ends, Kiefer Ravena says player commitment, evolution key to Gilas future

Luisa Morales - Philstar.com
As SEA Games gold streak ends, Kiefer Ravena says player commitment, evolution key to Gilas future
Kiefer Ravena
PSC Pool Photo

MANILA, Philippines — For five-time SEA Games gold medalist Kiefer Ravena, there are two things Gilas Pilipinas needs to pick itself up after ending a 33-year reign in Southeast Asian Games basketball.

That is, commitment and willingness to change from the players themselves.

Not being able to speak for the likes of the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas and the coaching staff, Ravena noted factors that he and the other members of Gilas can do on their own.

"'Pag-dating sa team, 'di naman ako yung namimili jan. Siguro, ang importante [lang] is yung makacommit yung players talaga," Ravena told Philstar.com during the Japan B. League Finals watch party organized by Titan and Slam PH.

"I'm just speaking from a player's standpoint na if you're given the chance to represent the country then sana kunin natin 'yung opportunity na 'yun kasi 'di naman yan dumadating palagi," he added.

Ravena himself was given the opportunity multiple times to don the Gilas jersey. Most recently, Ravena was unsuccessful in clinching his sixth straight SEA Games medal as the team settled for silver in the 31st edition of the biennial meet in Hanoi just last week.

Having been doused in cold water that the rest of the region is catching up to the Philippines in terms of their basketball skills, the former Ateneo standout said that players must be ready to step up their game to the next level and work on it.

"At the same time, we just have to really be prepared as the game evolves, as the players get better and better, day in, day out," said Ravena.

"Every year, we have to be on our toes, we have to be focused on our goals para sa future natin, especially when we're preparing for the World Cup," he added.

Currently, Ravena is enjoying a few weeks off as his future plans in the pro ranks remain unclear after a year with the Shiga Lakestars in the Japan B. League in the 2021-22 season.

A stint for Gilas in the upcoming FIBA Asia Cup in July may also be on the calendar for the guard.

BASKETBALL

GILAS

SEA GAMES

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