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Kiefer Ravena likely to take over Gilas PG post: Guiao

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BATANGAS CITY — Gilas Pilipinas Men coach Yeng Guiao looks to bring Kiefer Ravena as a replacement to Jayson Castro for the starting point guard spot for the team in the FIBA World Cup from Aug. 31-Sept. 15 in China.

“As of now, he’s the most logical choice to fill up the slot of Jayson,” said Guiao on Sunday night after his NLEX squad, where Ravena is also a part of, played Ginebra in a PBA Commissioner’s Cup game at the Batangas City Sports Coliseum.

He even added, “It’s almost a done deal doon sa slot ni (for Jason slot) Jayson.”

The six-foot combo guard was slapped with an 18-month ban in all competitions, whether in club or international play, by FIBA for testing positive of prohibited substances during a drug test prior to a FIBA World Cup Qualifiers game, which will end on Aug. 24, just in time for the FIBA worlds.

But Ravena was allowed by FIBA to go back to practice two months before his suspension ends, so he can now participate in Gilas practice by Monday night at the Meralco Gym in Pasig.

“[We’ll take it] slowly at first. Mahirap din biglain naman (There’s no need to hurry). He will just be doing what he feels he can do at the moment. We will not be pushing him that hard,” Guiao said on the approach to Ravena in practice.

“When he gets into siguro (perhaps) close to his game shape, that’s the time that we will try to push him”,” he added.