March 5 (Reuters) - Basketball-mad Philippines will experience live NBA for the first time in October when twice champions the Houston Rockets meet the Indiana Pacers in a pre-season fixture as part of a global schedule of games announced on Tuesday.
The clash on Oct. 10 will be the first pre-season game to be held in southeast Asia and the Philippines, who top the list of countries following the NBA on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter outside the United States.
"Our game in Manila is an exciting opportunity to connect with the passionate basketball fans in the Philippines and across southeast Asia," NBA commissioner David Stern said in a statement.
The NBA's Philippines website (ph.nba.com) added that six other teams would be involved globally in the October schedule including 16-times champions the Los Angeles Lakers.
The NBA has staged 138 pre-season and regular season games abroad since 1978 and will visit Brazil for the first time later this year when six-times champions the Chicago Bulls take on the Washington Wizards.
2013-14 NBA global games schedule:
Oklahoma City Thunder v Fenerbahce, Oct. 5, Istanbul
Philadelphia 76ers v Uxue Bilbao, Oct. 6, Bilbao
Oklahoma City v Philadelphia, Oct. 8, Manchester, England
Houston Rockets v Indiana Pacers, Oct. 10, Manila
Houston v Indiana, Oct. 13, Taipei
Chicago Bulls v Washington Wizards, Oct. 12, Rio de Janeiro
Golden State Warriors v Los Angeles Lakers, Oct. 15, Beijing
Golden State v Los Angeles, Oct. 18, Shanghai (Writing by Tom Pilcher in London, editing by Mark Meadows)