FIBA WC: Ramos, Ravena lead Gilas Pilipinas past pesky India

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Dwight Ramos and Thirdy Ravena combined for 32 points as Gilas Pilipinas pulled away in the middle two quarters to outlast India, 88-64 on Friday in the 2023 FIBA Basketball World Cup Asian Qualifiers second window at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.

The two Japan B.League players carried the Philippines as Ramos topscored with 17 points while Ravena added 15 for a hard-earned victory in Group A of the Asian Qualifiers.

Ravena shot 3-of-6 from three-point area, Ramos converted 6-of-9 field goals, while Roger Pogoy and Robert Bolick added 12 and 10 points respectively in a balanced offensive performance for the nationals.

It took a while for Gilas to find its rhythm from three-point area, hitting only 1-of-8 in the first quarter from long distance, before finally knocking down outside shots in the next frame.

India had a more competitive start, at one point tying the count at 11 apiece, before the Philippines established a double-digit cushion at 26-15 on back-to-back triples from Ravena.

Later on, Ravena hit another trey while Bolick added two conversions for a 44-32 halftime lead.

Head coach Chot Reyes’ wards padded the lead late in the third quarter, with Pogoy and Kelly Williams conspiring before a deep three by Kib Montalbo to beat the buzzer made it 68-47 entering the final quarter.

Prashant Singh Rawat led India with 13 points while Sahaij Pratap Singh Sekhon finished in double-digits for a second consecutive game with 12.

Gilas had a 47-36 rebounding lead and forced 18 turnovers, while shooting 46 percent from the field and 17-of-21 from the foul line.

The Philippines will next face New Zealand, which beat India, 101-46, on Sunday, February 27 for a chance to sweep the window.

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