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Asian Games: China escapes Clarkson, Philippines

/ 06:53 PM August 21, 2018

China escaped Jordan Clarkson and the Philippines, 82-80, to open its basketball campaign in the 2018 Asian Games at GBK Basketball Hall in Jakarta, Indonesia.

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Jordan Clarkson battled an apparent case of cramps in the fourth quarter but kept the Filipinos in the fight after three quarters where he scored much of his game-high 28 points in his Philippine debut.

READ: LOOK: PH’s Asian Games flag-bearer Clarkson clad in Barong Tagalog

The Philippines took an 80-77 edge after a fearless drive by Stanley Pringle with only 1:23 left before China, behind Zhao Rui, rallied and ended the game on a 5-0 spurt.

Paul Lee who, along with Christian Standhardinger and Pringle, stepped up when Clarkson was on the bench in the crucial stages of the fourth quarter, had a great look but just couldn’t get the potential game-winning triple to go as China ran the clock out.

China’s Rui Zhao, right, shoots for a basket as Philippines’ Jordan Clarkson, left, and Gabriel Norwood watch during their men’s basketball game at the 18th Asian Games in Jakarta, Indonesia on Tuesday, Aug. 21, 2018. (AP Photo/Aaron Favila)

READ: Big Asian Games test for national basketball squad 

Zhou Qi led the Chinese on both ends as he and fellow big man Wang Zhelin gave the Philippines’ fits with the Houston Rockets center scoring 25 points.

With the Philippines dropping to 1-1 and China tipped to beat Kazakhstan in its next game, the Filipinos will likely face another fierce rival in South Korea in the knockout stage.

READ: Philippines opens Asiad with rout of Kazakhstan 

The Philippines blew out Kazakhstan, 96-59, on Thursday.

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Standhardinger, who was unfazed by the bigger Chinese big men, finished with 18 points while Pringle and Lee contributed 14 and 10 points, respectively.

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TAGS: 2018 Asian games, ASIAD, China, Jordan Clarkson, Paul Lee, Philippines, Stanley Pringle, Zhou Qi
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