It’s no secret that the Philippines stops for three non-holiday significant events, specifically, the three Bs: beauty pageants, boxing, and basketball.
Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray knows how it felt when the country celebrated her success as she wore the Miss Universe crown. Today, she holds a significant role in the Philippines as an influencer who inspires her audience to leave a positive impact on the community.
This year, Catriona has a new title that allows her to train the spotlight on Filipino talent again, but this time on the basketball court.
Basketball is a popular and well-loved sport among Filipinos. If fans aren’t out playing the sport, they usually spend ample time watching local and international bouts. As the return of the FIBA World Cup slowly nears, Catriona joins former Gilas Pilipinas players LA Tenorio, Jeff Chan, Larry Fonacier, and Gary David as an ambassador of the Philippines.
It’s not the first time LA will be working with Catriona, but it’ll be the first for his fellow former Gilas Pilipinas players. Regardless, they’re all looking forward to joining the beauty queen as they promote basketball and the FIBA World Cup around the country.
“There is such a joy in being part of a community that is all cheering for the same team,” the beauty queen said during the “One Year To Go” milestone leading to FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 last August 25, Thursday.
Catriona is no stranger to sports, especially martial arts as she owns a black belt in Choi Kwang-do and pursued karate as a child. However, she doesn’t share the same prowess for basketball. The Filipina-Australian stunner jested that if basketball only required height, then she’d happily show off her skills on the court. On the other hand, she added she’ll try to get on the court when she and her fellow ambassadors work through the local provinces.
Since her success in 2018, Catriona has had several opportunities as an ambassadress. However, she’s brimming with pride and gratitude to see Filipinos supporting their athletes.
“It gives me so much pride and joy, and I look forward to warmly welcoming the world’s eyes to the Philippines. I know that we will have a celebration like no other. We will show them there are no better fans than here in the Philippines,” she said.
Aside from showing the Filipinos’ love for basketball, Catriona also wants to highlight the local culture and values in all aspects.
Catriona and the 2013-2014 Gilas Pilipinas team will also join the local ambassadors of co-hosts Japan and Indonesia, with the FIBA Global Ambassador that will be named later this year.
The “One-Year-To-Go” milestone also marks the launch of the second phase of the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 ticket sales, with Final Phase packages becoming available. Two exciting new packages are now for sale to the public: the Finals Ultimate Fan Pass and the Finals Superfan Pass. The media conference encouraged fans to register to the “Win For All” community at https://register.worldcup.basketball and avail of these passes at early bird rates.