Dwight Ramos reaffirms commitment to Gilas Pilipinas
MANILA, Philippines — National team mainstay Dwight Ramos reiterated his long-term commitment to the Gilas Pilipinas program.
The 25-year-old Filipino-American guard, who is set to play his third season in Japan B.League, may be away from the country for the next several months, but his desire to play for Gilas remains.
“At 25, I can’t say for sure what’s going to happen in the future but as long as I’m still playing at a high level and my body can hold up, then I’m going to keep on playing for the national team,” said Ramos during his press conference with the Levanga Hokkaido on Wednesday.
Ramos has been playing in the B.League since 2021 when he signed with the Toyama Grouses before transferring to Levanga last season.
Despite his busy schedule, Ramos made sure his overseas stint didn’t prevent him from representing the Philippines. In fact, he was the lone Gilas player to see action in all of the Fiba World Cup Asian Qualifier windows.
The 6-foot-4 Ramos emerged as one of the top players for Gilas Pilipinas with an average of 13.2 points, 5.6 rebounds, 2.4 assists, and 1.6 steals in five games during his World Cup debut in Manila two weeks ago.
Gilas ended up only having one win to show in the World Cup after beating China in its final game to finish 24th in the global showcase but Ramos said he learned so much from the experience.
“In the World Cup, I really prepared a long time for that so I was just happy to see that all of my preparations sort of kind of played out,” Ramos said. “I think that I really played well in the World Cup and I was really preparing for it. That’s one of the things I was happy about. I wish we won more games but at least we won one game.”
Ramos vows to bring all his learnings in playing against the world’s best players and teams in his second season with Hokkaido in the 2023-24 B.League season which tips off next month.
“Just the experience of playing against the best players. Like each team plays a different way so you kind of have to recognize it quickly and learn how to counter very fast. It was kind of like preparing for each game. You learn how to prepare one game at a time. After one game, you prepare for the next guy, the next team. So you have to prepare quickly and learn everything fast,” Ramos said. “I think that’s something that could help me in the B. League with so many teams, kind of have to adjust quickly.”
Ramos is also excited to face his Gilas teammates like AJ Edu of Toyama and Kai Sotto of the Hiroshima Dragonflies as well as pool members Ray Parks Jr. of the Nagoya Diamond Dolphins, Thirdy Ravena of the San-En NeoPhoenix, and Carl Tamayo of the Ryukyu Golden Kings.
“It’s always a good thing when I go against fellow Filipinos because it serves as extra motivation that you want the bragging rights of winning,” he said. “Of course, I have an advantage of knowing them but they probably also think that they have an advantage going against me. It probably cancels out but it’s just nice playing on the court playing against each other here in Japan, the B. League.”