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Jordan Clarkson, Kai Sotto headline Gilas Pilipinas for 2023 FIBA World Cup

Jordan Clarkson and Kai Sotto will once again headline the Philippines as Gilas Pilipinas named its Final 12 for the 2023 FIBA World Cup that the country is hosting.

The duo will lead a mix of veterans and young guns as the Filipinos look to surpass their previous World Cup showings.

In a list sent by Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas chief Al Panlilio, Japeth Aguilar will lead the pack as the newly-minted team captain alongside seasoned big man June Mar Fajardo. Scottie Thompson, who was out for a few weeks due to a hand injury, is also in the final lineup to join Clarkson in the backcourt.

Young guns AJ Edu, Rhenz Abando, and Dwight Ramos will also get their first taste of World Cup actions as professional cagers Jamie Malonzo, CJ Perez, RR Pogoy, and Kiefer Ravena round out the 12-man crew.

Thirdy Ravena, Calvin Oftana, Ray Parks, and Chris Newsome, meanwhile, were cut from the initial 16-man pool.

Clarkson and Sotto already played together during the fourth window of the Asian Qualifiers, while this will be Aguilar and Fajardo's third stint in the World Cup. Kiefer, Perez, and Pogoy also previously played in the 2019 edition of the World Cup.

The Gilas squad will take on the Dominican Republic first on the opening at Philippine Arena on August 25 before battling Angola and Italy on the 27th and 29th at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

—JKC, GMA Integrated News