SBP clarifies Remy Martin's non-inclusion in Gilas pool

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Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) President Al Panlilio clarified that the matter of not including Remy Martin in the Gilas Pilipinas pool is because of issues with eligibility and not because he does not deserve to be included.

This comes after the guard posted that he was hurt because of the exclusion "but will always represent."

The guard also noted that he thought it was "an honor just to be mentioned" adding that he also isn't closing the door for a possible stint in the future.

"We are more than happy to accommodate Remy and make him part of our Gilas Pilipinas program. However, we are constrained by the FIBA ruling that says a player hoping to play as a local must have a local passport before the age of 16," Panlilio said in a statement.

"That is one area that we are still trying to ascertain. There is no doubt that Remy's mother, Mary Anne Bagtas Macaspac was born in the Philippines. She has documents to prove that. However, we are waiting for more documents to prove that Remy is eligible to play as a local."

Because of the uncertainty in his eligibility and because Gilas Pilipinas head coach Yeng Guiao already stated that he will use many of his players from the last leg of the FIBA Asian Qualifiers, Martin will have to wait before getting the chance to wear a Philippine jersey.

Luckily for Martin, Panlilio is now in a better position to seek clarification and push for change as there are a lot of Filipino players all over the world who are disqualified from playing for the Philippines because of the passport rule.

"The issue on eligibility will again be raised in the next FIBA eligibility meeting. My position as Second Vice President in the FIBA Asia Board gives me an opportunity to push for clarity and reforms on that matter," Panlilio added.

"We are thankful to Remy for his sincere interest to play for our flag and country. We in the SBP are trying everything to make that a reality."