IT'S another big step for women's basketball as the Gilas Pilipinas Women's team joins the Jones Cup in preparation for the 2019 Fiba Women's Asia Cup in Bangalore, India and the 2019 Southeast Asian Games later in the year.
And for Jack Animam, she's just ecstatic with this chance as the Filipinas test their mettle early before the continental competitions.
"Isa din itong avenue to see where we are, the capabilities that we have, and to polish our system to really build the chemistry of the team, lalo na we are also preparing for Fiba Asia and SEA Games," she said.
Animam will be one of the key cogs for the Pat Aquino-coached national team as they start their campaign in the invitational tourney in Taiwan starting on Wednesday.
But she knows that this is also a good chance for the squad to know the team better, especially with Fil-Ams, namely Kelly Hayes, Gabi Bade, Meilyn Bautista, and Amecia Hayes.
"The goal I want to have in the Jones Cup is to see the chemistry of our team, especially that we have four Fil-Ams playing," said Animam.
Also part of the squad are mainstays Afril Bernardino and Janine Pontejos, as well as Clare Castro, Chack Cabinbin, Gemma Miranda, Danica Jose, and Camille Claro.
As much as this stint is looked at as a preparation for Gilas Women's, Animam reiterated that the Filipinas will have no other goal than to win.
"Gusto ko manalo. Syempre hindi magiging madali, but I know our team will do the best we can to get that W for the Philippines," she said, with the senior NU Lady Bulldog also looking to have her moment with the team in this run in the Jones Cup.
"I really can’t say na I have a favorite moment kasi puro men's lang ang sumasali dati. Siguro ngayon, pag naglaro na kami may mga top moments na ako."