September 15 ------ After all, it was his campaign in the 2021 FIBA Asia Cup Qualifiers that led him to sign a huge contract with B.League team Toyama Grouses. “Gilas has been a good preparation for me, playing in the qualifiers and the OQT,” Ramos told The Game. “I think Gilas really prepared me for this and can’t wait to get to work.”
However, the 6-foot-5 swingman’s status for the November window of the 2023 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers is still up in the air, he admitted. The B.League will take a break from November 15 to December 3. Still, it will be tough for him and the rest of the Filipino contingent in Japan to train and play for Gilas. For the opening window, Gilas will face South Korea in Seoul on the 25th and again in Manila on the 28th.
If the same quarantine measures apply, they will have to leave Japan on the morning of the 15th. They will then only clear hotel quarantine on the 25th. If they play on the 28th, they will have to leave Manila immediately on the 29th before undergoing a 14-day quarantine. In the case of Ramos, he will only rejoin Toyama on December 13 – making him miss four games in total (two against Ryukyu and two more against Kiefer Ravena and Shiga). “For this November, I’m just looking towards how the quarantine situations are going to be in both countries if I decide to come back. As long as Coach Tab (Baldwin) and everyone else wants me out there, I’m going to keep trying my best to make it to the window to practice and play for them,” said Ramos, who averaged 13.8 points, 6.2 rebounds, 2.2 assists, and 2.0 steals in six games played in the Asia Cup Qualifiers.
Still, the 23-year-old Filipino-American vows that he will do everything in his power to still play for Gilas, especially come 2022. “I’m always going to be playing for Gilas, it will always be part of my roots.”