Filipino basketball wunderkind Kai Sotto is raring to join Gilas Pilipinas in their training bubble at the Inspire Sports Academy in Calamba, Laguna.
Days since he landed in Manila after flying in from the US, the 7-foot-3 stalwart can't wait to clear quarantine protocols and get back to training with his fellow compatriots in the national team.
"I am still in my hotel quarantine... I am just waiting for the announcement of when I’ll be leaving for the national team training bubble,” Sotto said in an interview with with Dyan Castillejo and Quinito Henson on PlayitRightTV.
“I am ready, I am excited, and I can’t wait.”
The 19-year-old basketball prodigy, who is already vaccinated according to several reports, arrived in the country on May 31. He is set to complete his quarantine period on June 13 or 14, which is two to three days before the men's national basketball team plunge into action against South Korea in the FIBA Asia Cup Qualifiers.
This means that he will only have a small window for preparation with the team, which could discourage the coaching staff from fielding him in during the tournament. Chances are high that Sotto will suit up in the Belgrade Olympic Qualifying Tournament from June 31 to July 9.
For the meantime, the waiting game continues for Sotto, who is ready to realize his dream of representing the Philippines as part of the seniors national team.
"It's a dream come true, it's almost a no brainer, to have an opportunity to play for the men's national team," bared the promising athlete, who recently signed with the Adelaide 36ers.
"I've been waiting for this opportunity and now I have the chance to play. I just can't wait."
Ohmer Bautista is a sports journalist who has covered local and international sporting events in the Philippines. The views expressed are his own.
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