Rain or Shine, one of the esteemed teams in the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA), has officially accepted an invitation to participate in the upcoming 2023 William Jones Cup in Taiwan. The tournament, which marks the return of the annual international basketball competition after a four-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, will take place from August 12 to 20.
In an announcement, Rain or Shine revealed that former Ateneo standout Ange Kouame will reinforce their squad for the prestigious tournament. This will be the first time that a PBA team will be sent to Taiwan to compete in the Jones Cup, a competition traditionally participated in by national teams or professional clubs from various countries.
Expressing their gratitude for the opportunity, Rain or Shine Governor Mamerto Mondragon said, “We are honored not just to represent the PBA, but also the country in the Jones Cup. The high-level competition will also help us to better prepare for the upcoming PBA season. We will give it our best shot and hope to bring honor to the country.”
Under the guidance of Coach Yeng Guiao, Rain or Shine will aim to replicate the success achieved by Mighty Sports Philippines in 2019, when the team emerged as champions in the previous edition of the Jones Cup with a lineup reinforced by multiple American players.
The Philippines has a rich history in the Jones Cup, having won the tournament on five occasions. The victories include triumphs by the national team-flavored Northern Consolidated in 1981 and 1986, the PBA Centennial Team in 1998, Gilas Pilipinas in 2012, and Mighty Sports in 2016.
Ange Kouame, who has previous experience in the Jones Cup as part of the Ateneo team that achieved a respectable fourth-place finish in the 2018 edition, will play a pivotal role in Rain or Shine’s campaign.
The tournament will serve as valuable preparation for Rain or Shine as they gear up for the upcoming PBA season, set to commence in October with the import-flavored Commissioner’s Cup. Currently boasting a 6-2 record in the ongoing PBA On Tour, Rain or Shine’s young talents, including Anton Asistio and Gian Mamuyac, will also benefit from the international-level competition.
With their participation in the 2023 William Jones Cup, Rain or Shine aims to continue the success of Filipino teams in this renowned regional basketball event. As the team embarks on this exciting journey, they hope to add another milestone to the country’s basketball legacy and make their mark on the global stage.