By Chris Sanders
Ryerson Rams men’s basketball head coach Roy Rana will lead Team Canada during their FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 Qualifiers, according to a press release by Canada Basketball.
On Tuesday, Canada basketball announced its official coaching staff and training camp roster leading up to the second window of FIBA Basketball World Cup Qualifiers. Four of the 35 members who were selected are active or previous Rams players/coaches. Rana has been selected as the head coach along with his former assistant coach Patrick Tatham. They’ll be joined by some familiar faces, as former Rams guards Aaron Best and Manny Diressa will also suit up for the red and white.
The aforementioned bunch will be operating alongside some of the best Canada basketball has to offer, including NBA players Cory Joseph, Kelly Olynyk, Tristan Thompson, Khem Birch, Dillon Brooks and Justin Jackson.
This isn’t Rana’s first rodeo with the national affiliate. For the last five years, the Rams head coach has led the Canadian junior (under-19) team, while serving as an interim head coach/assistant coach on the senior squad.
Rana’s most memorable moment while wearing the maple leaf on his chest came in 2017, when he led the junior team to a U19 FIBA World Cup Championship. Despite representing Canada on a number of occasions, the pride of contributing to the success of the nation’s basketball program ceases to amaze the long time Ryerson coach.
“(I’m) always honoured to answer the call to represent my country in international competition,” Rana said. “I’m looking forward to the journey with our family on the floor.”
Canada will continue its progression to the 2019 World Cup in the Americas Qualifiers on Sept. 13 at the Place Bell facility in Laval against Brazil, followed by a game versus Chile on the 17.