November 5, 2022 | 9:48pm
MANILA, Philippines — Ateneo big man Ange Kouame said he is willing to play for Gilas Pilipinas in the upcoming window of the 2023 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers if he is called upon.
This despite a nagging knee injury that has forced him to play limited minutes for the Blue Eagles in UAAP Season 85, Kouame reiterated his commitment should he be included in the final lineup.
“If I’m part of the lineup, I’m happy to join,” said Kouame after Ateneo’s 68-54 win over La Salle on Saturday.
“At the end of the day, it’s something I love to do, playing basketball. If they call me, I will represent the country for sure,” he added.
Kouame is still nursing the same injury that sidelined him for the 2022 FIBA Asia Cup — a meniscal sprain and partial ACL tear.
But the Ivory Coast-born cager says that he feels comfortable to still play for the national team at this moment.
“[I feel] pretty good. For now, I’m still talking to the doctors if I should get surgery at the end of the [UAAP] season,” said Kouame.
“But it will depend on how things go and how I feel at the end of the season. You’ll never know,” he added.
In his two games played in the Asian Qualifiers, Kouame averaged 5.5 points and 6.5 rebounds.
Gilas Pilipinas plays against Jordan and Saudi Arabia on November 10 and 13 (November 11 and 14, Manila time), respectively, in two away games for this window.
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Publish date : 2022-11-05 13:48:00