By Ivan Saldajeno
QUEZON CITY--Just in the nick of time!
Indonesia finally got the clearance for its two key players, naturalized wing Jamarr Johnson and Indo-American star Arki Wisnu, to play in the SEABA Men's Championship with only two games left in its schedule including the clash against Vietnam on Wednesday.
"The US verified that I never played for the national team, so they sent a letter [to SEABA] saying that I've never played for them," Johnson told Dugout Philippines after the game that resulted in an Indonesian blowout.
[Related Story: Johnson, Wisnu boost Indonesia's rout of Myanmar]
Johnson later revealed that he and Wisnu got the green light earlier Wednesday or just hours before the 3 p.m. tip-off.
With the win, Indonesia is assured of placing no worse than second in the tournament, making its showdown against Gilas in the final day on Thursday the virtual championship match with a spot in the FIBA Asia Cup and the FIBA World Cup Qualifiers on the line.
However, Johnson insisted he is ready for the challenge even if the majority of an expected huge crowd at the Smart Araneta Coliseum will be against them.
"[The crowd] does not matter to me, because when I play basketball, I'm kinda focusing, so I don't hear the crowd. I'll be OK," vowed Johnson, who finished with 17 points in his SEABA debut.
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