MANILA, Philippines – Players of the Talk 'N Text Tropang Texters are willing to take on any role for Gilas Pilipinas as the national basketball team began its build up for the FIBA Asia Championship in August.
In an interview with Joaquin Henson of The Philippine Star, TNT players Kelly Williams, Jarred Dillinger and Larry Fonacier vowed to do whatever national team head coach Chot Reyes asked of them.
"I believe I can bring leadership by example. Like (in my) previous Gilas stints, I'll have a utility mindset," said Williams, one of seven Talk 'N Text players named to the national team pool.
"Whatever the team needs of me, I'll try my best to do – play big, play small. I'm willing and capable of doing it," he added.
Meanwhile, Dillinger is hopeful that his versatile skill set will be of help to the national team’s cause.
"Whether it's defense, running the point, shooting 3s, getting to the basket to create opportunities for others – I'm gonna make sure my game is on point," he said.
Fonacier, for his part, will bring his three-point sniping and defensive effort to the squad.
The former Ateneo standout said he and the other TNT players are honored to put on the national team colors, especially as they have a chance to win the Philippines' first FIBA-Asia title in 40 years.
"Just to be mentioned in the same level as (Robert) Jaworski, (Bogs) Adornado, (Ramon) Fernandez, (Abet) Guidaben and the others is already a lifetime achievement for me," Fonacier said.
Aside from Williams, Dillinger and Fonacier, Jimmy Alapag, Ranidel De Ocampo, Jayson Castro and Ryan Reyes were also named to the national team pool.
They join Gary David, Japeth Aguilar, Gabe Norwood, Jeff Chan, JunMar Fajardo, LA Tenorio, Marc Pingris, Greg Slaughter and Marcus Douthit.
The national team held their first practice last Monday at the PhilSports Arena. According to Reyes, they will hold another practice today at the Mall of Asia Arena.