Philippine basketball

Chot Reyes lauds Dwight Ramos, Juan GDL work ethic in Gilas practices

JR Isaga

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Chot Reyes lauds Dwight Ramos, Juan GDL work ethic in Gilas practices

MAINSTAY. Dwight Ramos is back for another tour of duty with Gilas Pilipinas.

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'What we're seeing is very encouraging,' says Gilas Pilipinas coach Chot Reyes about Japan B. League imports Dwight Ramos and Juan Gomez de Liaño

MANILA, Philippines – Newly reappointed Gilas Pilipinas head coach Chot Reyes had nothing but good words for returning Japan B. League imports Dwight Ramos and Juan Gomez de Liaño in the Philippine Sportswriters Association (PSA) Forum on Tuesday, February 8.

Speaking alongside Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas executive director Sonny Barrios, the multi-titled PBA mentor lauded the returnees’ work ethic heading into the upcoming window of the 2023 FIBA World Cup Asia Qualifiers starting on February 24.

“I must say I’m very pleased. We’ve had four practices so far and what we’re seeing is very encouraging,” Reyes said. “Now while we are very pleased, we’re very cautious because you all know that practices are different from games, and we know how tough the competition is coming the next window.”

“But in terms of effort, dedication, participation, engagement, I have no issues at all,” he continued.

Both Ramos and Gomez de Liaño took advantage of the situation in their respective B. League divisions to answer the call for another national team duty.

Ramos, an Asian Quota import of the Toyama Grouses, headed home right before the B. League Division 1 break – put in place to give way for the FIBA window – kicked in.

Meanwhile, Gomez de Liaño, also an Asian Quota reinforcement, is currently a free agent after being released by the Division 2’s Earthfriends Tokyo Z. Unlike Division 1, Division 2’s schedule will continue normally throughout the month.

Although Reyes admitted that the first few practices were “chaotic,” he is nonetheless mixing and matching the Gilas pool of Ramos, Gomez de Liaño, Ange Kouame, Will Navarro, Jaydee Tungcab, and Tzaddy Rangel with selected TNT Tropang Giga members to see what works best.

“We were not fully prepared, so we’re making do with what we have. The practices are a bit chaotic, but obviously, because we have very little time, we’re mixing the Gilas players with the players we feel are going to make the lineup,” he said.

“There’s no secret that they are Roger Pogoy, Troy Rosario, Poy Erram, and we’re taking a look at Kib Montalbo because we have no point guard aside from Juan Gomez de Liaño. Like I said, the initial results are very, very promising.”

Longtime Gilas star Jayson Castro is also one of the TNT veterans Reyes tapped first, but both men have their reservations given Castro’s age and the window’s grueling four-game slate in just five days.

With a little over two weeks left before the window starts, the final Gilas lineup will likely be announced sometime in the next few days. –

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