Jordan Clarkson
Clarkson reinserted in Asiad lineup, but SBP awaits final word from NBA
Nelson Beltran ( - August 14, 2018 - 8:15pm

MANILA, Philippines – The Jordan Clarkson saga has continued with the Philippines gaining Tuesday night the nod of Olympic Council of Asia for the reinsertion of the Fil-Am NBA player in the Team Philippines lineup for the 18th Asian Games men’s basketball tournament in Jakarta, Indonesia.

At press time, the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas, however, could only hope that the National Basketball Association would have a change of heart and clear Clarkson to suit up with the Philippine quintet in the Jakarta Asiad.

But time is ticking fast as the Nationals play the Kazakhs at 10 a.m. Thursday at the GBK Basketball Hall in the Indon capital.

Earlier Tuesday, the Philippines’ Asiad chef de mission Richard Gomez claimed that Clarkson has gotten clearance from the NBA.

The re-inclusion of Clarkson in the lineup went with the delisting of Don Trollano. If the NBA clearance doesn’t come, coach Yeng Guiao will be left with 11 players at his disposal.

But there were hopes as SBP officials were still in contact with the NBA.

Meanwhile, Guiao and his troops would rather stick on deciphering and scrutinizing Team Kazakhstan.

The Nationals are focused on Team Kazakh, having spent quite a time watching videos of Kazakh games since arriving in Jakarta early Monday morning.

“The objective is to play Kazakhstan like we have played them many times already. We need to be familiar with how they play as if it’s not the first time we will play against them,” said Guiao.

Action in men’s basketball in the Jakarta meet fired off yesterday with Chinese Taipei topping Japan, 71-65, in the opening match then Thailand pulling off an 87-86 squeaker over Mongolia.

Meanwhile, Iran and Syria have gained automatic entry into the knockout stage on the last-minute withdrawal of United Arab Emirates in Group B.

The Iranians and the Syrians merely fight for KO round seedings in their game at 10 a.m. on August 25.

The Philippines was originally bunched with Iran, Syria and UAE. Team Philippines was later regrouped with China and Kazakhstan on the pullout of Palestine.

Team Philippines and Kazakhstan are well familiar with each other since they have had a number of clashes, including in the Incheon Asiad where the Nationals topped Kazakhstan, 67-65, in a controversial match where the Filipinos shot the ball in the enemy goal at endgame.

Ending up with a better quotient than the Philippines and Qatar in a three-way deadlock in their group, Kazakhstan advanced to the knockout round and went on to finish fourth.

Kazakhstan first competed in the Asiad in 1994 after the breakup of the Soviet Union. The Kazakhs finished fifth in 1994 in Hiroshima, fourth in Bangkok in 1998, third in Busan in 2002, seventh in Doha in 2006 then fourth in Incheon.

Though struggling as of late, the Kazakhs remain a dangerous team with their tall players with good touch from the outside.

Forwards Anton Ponomarev and Anatoliy Kolesnikov and shooting guard Rustam Yergali are the Kazakhs top guns all averaging in double figures in the World Cup qualifiers.

They dropped all three matches in the 2017 FIBA Asia Cup in Beirut then bounced back with an even 3-3 showing in the first round of the FIBA World Cup qualifiers. They swept Qatar in two games, split two matches with Iraq and dropped both games against Iran.

The Kazakhs and Gilas face off in the FIBA World Cup qualifiers on November 30 in Almaty and on February 24 in Manila.

  • Latest
  • Trending
Are you sure you want to log out?
Login is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

or sign in with