Taipei, Nov. 27 (CNA) Taiwan’s top basketball association made it clear on Friday that US center William Artino was recruited primarily to play for the national team, and any club wishing to sign him should respect him.
The 29-year-old US center, measuring 2.11 meters, completed his naturalization procedures last month while abroad to be able to represent Taiwan in international competitions, according to the Chinese Taipei Basketball Association (CTBA).
He will be arriving in Taiwan soon, and teams from Taiwan’s two professional leagues, T1 LEAGUE and P. LEAGUE +, will almost certainly compete for his services at the club level.
However, any contract with Artino to play for a team in one of the leagues will have to be made between Artino, the club and the CTBA, and will stipulate that priority will be given to the training and competition schedule of the national team, CTBA said. in a press release on Friday.
The statement came at a time when Taiwan has struggled to get some of its best players to play on the national team, in part because of their obligations to their clubs in professional leagues in Taiwan or abroad.
The talent shortage was evident when Taiwan barely escaped Guam in a two-game playoff in August to earn a place in the 2021 FIBA Asian Cup, nearly ending its Asian Cup streak. since 1985.
Played every two years until 2017, the Asian Cup is now held every four years but the 2021 tournament has been postponed to 2022 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Taiwan’s performance in the Asian Cup qualifiers led CTBA to re-focus on the national team and push for more imported talent to strengthen the national roster.
This urgency, many was responsible for the expedited nature of Artino’s naturalization, as he did not have to meet the standard minimum residence requirement. He also did not have to give up his US citizenship.
Under Taiwanese Nationality Law, one of the mandatory conditions for a foreign national to apply for naturalization is legal residence in the country for at least five consecutive years, during which time he or she must have resided for more than 183 years. days a year.
CTBA to ensure Artino arrives in Taiwan soon and will represent the country’s national basketball team in February 2022 in their first 2023 FIBA World Cup qualifying matches against Australia, Japan and China, the association said.
The seasoned veteran once played in Taiwan, when he played for the Formosa Dreamers in the ASEAN Basketball League in the 2018-19 season, averaging 20.6 points and 10.7 rebounds. per game.
He has also played professionally in Estonia, Denmark and Romania after completing his college career at Creighton in 2015 and spent the 2020-2021 season in Mexico’s top professional league with Panteras de Aguascalientes, where he averaged 17 , 4 points and 8.8 rebounds per game.