John Bryan Ulanday (The Philippine Star) – January 14, 2021 – 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Duke University’s Vanessa de Jesus and University of Pennsylvania’s Kayla Padilla have expressed their willingness to suit up for Gilas Pilipinas women’s team following a fruitful discussion with Filipino head coach and program director Pat Aquino.

Save for some paper works, which should be completed soon, De Jesus and Padilla are both ready and excited to carry the Philippine flag in international competitions while playing for their respective schools in the US NCAA.

“They want to play for us. But the paper work (passports and other documents) is not yet there,” said Aquino, who was assisted in the discussions by Fil-Am Nation Select mentor Cris Gopez.

“They are really excited. It’s wonderful that we had a chance to talk to them about what we can give them and what is available for them. I’m very happy for that,” said Aquino.

De Jesus’ and Padilla’s parents are Filipinos, making it easier for them to secure the necessary documents and become part of the future Gilas core.

Once their papers are sealed, signed and delivered, Aquino will discuss their availability and schedule with their mother schools as Gilas braces for a busy 2021.





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