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For Clarkson, being part of Gilas in Asiad "a great opportunity"

Jordan Clarkson is gearing up for his much-awaited Gilas debut. Ivan Saldajeno (file photo)
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA--After a whirlwind lead-up, Jordan Clarkson will finally play for the Philippines in an international competition.

Following a "one-time exception" given by the NBA, the six-foot-five Cleveland Cavalier is now eligible to play for Gilas Pilipinas in the Asian Games in Jakarta and is in fact set to make his debut on Tuesday night against China.

"It's a great opportunity just to be here and play in the Asian Games," said Clarkson.

Despite the drama that unfolded prior to his inclusion, in which he was inserted to the submitted lineup by the SBP to the Indonesia Asian Games Organizing Committee only to be replaced by Don Trollano after the NBA initially disallowed him and then eventually reinserted, this time for good, after finally getting the NBA clearance, Clarkson feels blessed that he can now play for Gilas.

"It’s kinda been back and forth for me but it’s a blessing for having me here," he further said.

As his Gilas debut beckons, Clarkson vows to provide Gilas the needed lift.

"I’ll continue to do great and I’m really excited to step on the floor," he added. "At the end of the day we’re here to win and compete. That’s what I’m trying to bring."

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno