ANGE Kouame is just pumped to be back in a national team uniform that he's looking forward to a sweep of the fifth window of the 2023 Fiba World Cup Asian qualifiers next week.
"If I'm part of the lineup, I'm happy to join. 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 said.
Kouame is part of the 20-man Gilas Pilipinas pool and is poised to once again fill the role of the naturalized player for the Philippines' series of away games, first against Jordan on Nov. 10 and Saudi Arabia on Nov. 13.
Unlike the last time that he donned the national tri-colors with fellow amateurs, Kouame this time will link up with a bevy of PBA players -- one of the reasons which he feels reinvigorated him for his return to Gilas duty.
"I'm really excited especially during practice lately. To be able to see them, I was able to learn much from them too," he said. "It keeps me going because I'm trying to be like them, a professional one day. I'm really excited to play with them."
Among the pros, Japeth Aguilar is one who has been keen in taking Kouame under his wing, with the Ateneo center relishing the opportunity to pick the Ginebra forward's brain.
"He's been with the team for a long time so I ask around everybody, but there's so much people that I talk to and I try to learn from," he said.
With this, Kouame is optimistic that the Philippines will be able to sweep these games as Gilas currently holds a 3-3 record in Group E.
"This is good because we're really hungry," he said. "We've seen the lineup and I think everybody deserves to be there. So I think it's possible to get the sweep."