Jayson Castro suited up for Gilas Pilipinas’ game against Japan after missing the previous one against Australia in the 2nd window of the 2019 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers.
And while the 30-year old resident star of TNT KaTropa is still proving to one and all that he could still play ball, even nailing the dagger floater against the Japanese to the delight of the home crowd at the MOA Arena, he believes that his ‘successor’ is already in the midst.
Enter NLEX Road Warriors rookie Kiefer Ravena, aptly nicknamed the ‘Phenom’ during his playing days in high school and college due to his uncanny combination of high basketball IQ, skills and athleticism.
This early, Ravena is showing why he deserves the tag, both in the PBA and in the international scene.
The 24-year old son of former PBA player Bong Ravena played in all 4 games of Gilas in the 1st and 2nd windows and averaged 7.3 points, 2 rebounds and 3.3 assists.
“Oo, kasi makikita mo kay Kiefer na willing siyang matuto,” said a beaming Castro when asked if he sees the young Ravena taking the cudgels for the national team in the future.
At the same time, Castro is excited to see the tandem of Ravena and Terrence Romeo orchestrating the plays for Gilas in the upcoming window.
“At the same time, nandiyan si Terrence, so ‘yung tandem na ‘yun for sure magiging maganda,” said Castro.
Romeo is still recovering from a knee contusion injury but has promised to be ready for the 3rd window which is set on June 29, against Chinese-Taipei (away) and July 2 vs Australia (home).