FOR Alyssa Valdez, Kiefer Ravena is still a winner despite Gilas Pilipinas absorbing a 62-108 drubbing against Italy in the opener of the 2019 FIBA World Cup.
Even though miles away from Foshan, China, Valdez still expressed never-ending support to her long-time partner, who’s making his comeback in the international stage after serving the 18-month suspension FIBA meted on him.
“I promised also to watch his first-ever basketball game back, but I wasn’t able kasi may mga commitments nga,” said the three-time Premier Volleyball League MVP on Saturday.
Valdez had a game for Creamline against sister team Choco Mucho at the Arena in San Juan City, which was over an hour before the tip-off between Philippines and Italy.
Ravena and Valdez promised to exchange messages about the winning results of their respective matches.
“Sabi namin pagka-after ng game dapat ang mabasa namin sa isa’t isa na text panalo kami,” Valdez said.
After delivering 25 points in Creamline’s four-set win over Choco Mucho, Valdez rushed her way to the press room to watch on the TV Ravena’s World Cup debut, tuning in with seven minutes remaining in the lopsided ballgame.
As Valdez was watching, and, at the same time, answering the post-game questions inside the press room, Ravena nailed the first three-pointer for Gilas. Unfortunately, the volleyball star didn’t see the basket as she had her back turned from the TV while listening to a reporter’s question.
Whereas Creamline came with a victory, the outcome was the opposite for Gilas Pilipinas in a rude welcome in Pool D of the world meet. Ravena finished the game with five points.
But in Valdez’s heart, Ravena is still a winner following his successful basketball comeback after a long layoff.
“Panalo pa rin naman siya, nakapaglaro na siya,” said Valdez, who couldn’t stop smiling as he watches his boyfriend back at playing the game he loves most.
Despite the blowout, Valdez expressed her all-out support to Ravena and Gilas Pilipinas in their two remaining games in the preliminaries against Serbia and Angola.
“Walang imposible talaga, just play and just enjoy the game,” Valdez said.
“It’s a good showing also being just there sa Fiba di ba. Serbia guys tsaka Angola guys,” she added. “Tiwala tayo, laban lang ng laban. Hindi pa tapos. Okay lang yan, exposure din yan sa mga players.”