LA Revilla surprised by Gilas call-up, but his coach certainly wasn't. He explains why
LA Revilla says he's looking forward to fight for Gilas spots against the likes of Paul Lee, Jayson Castro, and Terrence Romeo - and at the same time learn from them. Jerome Ascano

LA Revilla admitted he was surprised to be included in Gilas Pilipinas’ 24-man pool for the foreseeable future international tournaments.

The Mahindra star playmaker’s name was called along with 11 more who national coach Chot Reyes picked to join the 12 cadets in a new 24-man pool - and no one was more surprised than Revilla himself.

“’Di pa talaga ako makapaniwala,” Revilla said, giving him something to cheer about after the Floodbuster’s 107-91 loss to Alaska in their Philippine Cup matchup. “Sobrang hanggang ngayon, ‘di pa nagsi-sink in.”

“Something to look forward to, pero tingnan lang kung anong mangyari sa schedule,” he added. “Medyo di pa nags-sink in kasi marami pang bagay na dapat intindihin, pero magandang place to be."

[See LA Revilla, Norbert Torres surprise selections in Reyes' new Gilas 5.0 pool]

The 5-foot-7 Revilla, though, refused to get way ahead of himself as he fights for a point guard spot along with Jayson Castro, Terrence Romeo, and Paul Lee.

“Excited ako mag-compete. Let’s be honest, these guys have been there and they are proven,” Revilla said.

“Yung chance maliit, pero mas tinitingnan ko yung side na matututo ako sa kanila and pwede kong ikagaling,” added the pint-sized point guard, who’s also vying for a spot against Jio Jalalon and Mike Tolomia from the cadet pool.

[See Reyes explains why he picked Revilla over Mallari, Torres over Intal]

Mahindra coach Chris Gavina was hardly surprised of the selection of his prized 27-year-old ward.

“I’ve always told him that he’s easily one of the Top Ten guards in the nation," Gavina said. "He’s always willing to sacrifice whatever it is when he’s called upon and he’s become such a great leader for our team."

"Hopefully, he has the opportunity to show his wares on the international level," he added.


Follow the writer on Twitter: @KarloSacamos