Indonesia’s naturalized player Jamarr Andre Johnson has returned to join the men’s basketball team in preparation for the upcoming 18th Asian Games.
“I had to spend some time with my family, but I was always coming back. I’m recharged and ready to go,” said the 2018 Indonesian Basketball League (IBL) Finals MVP of Satria Muda Pertamina, who was notably absent from their 2018 William Jones Cup campaign, leaving the team to test out going big with center Kore White in his stead.
The Indonesian basketball federation has also recalled their national team mainstays from participating in the FIBA Asia Champions Cup East Inter Sub-zone Qualifiers, replacing them with much younger players in the club championship qualifying tournament so the veterans could continue training at home.
The hosts will be joining Mongolia, Asian powerhouse South Korea, and familiar foes Thailand in Group A.
The last time these two Southeast Asian teams met a month ago, Indonesia got the upper hand over Thailand, and Johnson was part of that Timnas squad that took home the gold after sweeping the competition at the FIBA Asia Cup SEABA Pre-Quaifiers. He was also the naturalized player for Indonesia during the 2017 SEABA Championships.
“We like that we were able to get a win the last time, but the past is the past. I’m sure (Thailand) will be ready. In all honesty we are looking to approach every opponent the same and play our A game every time we touch the floor,” said Johnson. “We want to make it out of our bracket and see if we can advance as far as we can.”
While there has not been an official announcement as to who will be consisting of the national team, but the core reigning IBL MVP Xaverius Prawiro, Abraham Damar Grahita, Andakara Prastawa Dhyaksa, Sandy Febiansyakh Kurniawan, Arki Dikania Wisnu, Kaleb Ramot Gemilang, Kevin Yonas Argadiba Sitorus, Ponsianus Nyoman Indrawan, Firman Dwi Nugroho, and Valentino Wuwungan are all expected to join Johnson and continue representing Indonesia.
“The Asian games will be in our back yard, so we got to represent. Focus, discipline, and hard work approaching these games. We are gonna go hard.”
Timnas Indonesia will host the 18th Asian Games men’s basketball events at the Istora Gelora Bung Karno Basketball Hall in Jakarta, Indonesia from August 19 – September 1.