Ricky Rubio connects with Pinoy hoop fans after admitting enjoying a round of fishballs
Minnesota Timberwolves star Ricky Rubio took a selfie with participants of the Crazylight Boost camp at the Gatorade Hoops Center. Dante Peralta

NBA star Ricky Rubio brought smile to the faces of participants in the Crazylight Boost camp following his surprise visit at the Gatorade Hoops Center in Mandaluyong City on Saturday afternoon.

“Just keep on pursuing your dreams and have fun doing it,” he told the invitees to the Titan Trial Run that featured the brand’s new sneaker.

Collegiate stars Kevin Ferrer and Aljon Mariano were among the 30 plus participants which also included rookie hopefuls in this year’s PBA Draft.

The boyish­looking Spaniard endeared himself to Filipino fans after admitting he tried eating fishballs dipped in hot sauce during Friday’s rain­soaked #TakeOnManila Tour.

According to an adidas rep, Rubio’s short foray to the Walled City in Intramuros generated a record for hits in their social media accounts particularly a viral photo of Rubio dribbling a basketball in front of the Rizal Memorial in the middle of a downpour.

“Ricky is a social guy. He’s very down to earth and we wanted to connect with the people and we were able to do it by bringing him around the city and to the event here,” said Tilman Wendt, senior manager, brand communications adidas Southeast Asia Pacific.

The flashy Minnesota Timberwolves point guard personally handed out black ‘Rubio’ shirts with his #9 on the back. He later autographed some jerseys and even went one on one with a young baller.

Rubio delighted fans when he delivered an assist to another player by bouncing the ball on the backboard for a dunk. He also took a selfie with the campers which he shared on his social media account.

“We wanted to have a connection with the kids in Filipino basketball and he’s the guy who can provide this. He has Spanish roots which the Philippines also has. We wanted to have a connection and he is easy to talk to and approach and he loves the Filipinos,” Wendt added.

Rubio later made the ceremonial tip between during the game among camp participants.

The Spanish star later on went to the Blue Pitch in Circuit Makati where he showed off his football skills with several kids.

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