2014 FIBA Asia Cup Roundup: Day 7

Liu Cheng of Taiwan goes up against Mohammad Jamshidi of Iran
in the Finals of the 2014 FIBA Asia Cup today.

Day 7 of the 2014 FIBA Asia Cup in Wuhan, China featured two classification games and the knockout semifinals. Iran and Taiwan disposed of their respective rivals to book seats in the Finals.

In the first game, India fell short against Jordan, 65-69. With starting center Amritpal Singh getting into foul trouble and playing a total of just 12 minutes, India had to turn to other players for the bulk of its production. Substitute frontliners Palpreet Brar, Yadwinder Singh, and Rikin Pethani tried to come to the rescue, but, in the end, they couldn’t help tow India to a victory. The Jordanians exploited this weakness to the full as twin towers Ahmad Al-Dwairi and Mohammad Shaher Hussein had their way in the paint, scoring 21 and 10 points respectively. Al-Dwairi also dominated the glass with 10 rebounds. Vishesh Bhriguvanshi and Amjyot Singh carried the fight for India, but their combined 31 markers fell short. India looked to be in control after Brar scored the first four points of the fourth quarter to hand India its final taste of the lead, 51-47, before Hussein sparked a 16-5 run that gave Jordan enough of a cushion to cruise to the win. Jordan advances to the battle for fifth place, while India is relegated to the match for seventh.

In the second game, Japan made short work of Singapore, 82-48. Balanced scoring was the order of the day for Team Hayabusa as every single player fielded in by coach Kenji Hasegawa scored. Four players ended up in double-figures led by Yusuke Okada, Takeki Shonaka, and Ryumo Ono, who had 11 points each. Japan led practically from start to finish here, pounding the paint and hitting 44% of its threes. In contrast, Singapore couldn’t get anything going from the perimeter as they missed all 19 of their long toms. Wei Long Wong had a dozen points to lead Singapore, which will face India in the battle for seventh, while Japan looks ahead against Jordan to try and salvage fifth place.

In the day’s first semifinal duel, Iran pummeled the Philippines, 76-55. Despite missing the services of key players Samad Nikkhah Bahrami, Mahdi Kamrani, and Hamed Afagh among others, Team Melli still flashed dominant form in overwhelming the Pinoys, whose inconsistency finally caught up with them. The World-Cup-bound Iranians didn’t let up at all in this match, turning to young guns Behnam Yakhchali and Mohammad Jamshidi to continuously frustrate the Filipinos. Coach Chot Reyes’s crew probably expected that Iran would go to its giants in the paint, but Team Melli’s wingmen were the ones who did majority of the damage. Yakhchali, just 19 years old, and Jamshidi, just 22 years of age, spearheaded Iran’s attack with 18 and 19 points respectively. Gilas Pilipinas has now lost to the Iranians for the third straight time in FIBA Asia competitions. The last time Gilas beat Iran in an actual FIBA Asia event was four years ago when Gilas’s first iteration upset Iran in the quarterfinals of the 2010 FIBA Asia Stankovic Cup in Lebanon. For Gilas to have been able to pull the rug from under Iran here, they should have played much better than they did in their last four games. Instead of that, however, Gilas faltered in many departments, getting outmatched in rebounds, assists, steals, fastbreak points, and points off turnovers. Gilas was able to take care of the ball relatively well with just 8 turnovers, but their shooting just went south after halftime. The Pinoys shot 14% from long distance and just 33% overall from the field. In contrast, Iran made 7/20 threes (35%) and connected on 42% of their field goal attempts. Despite having a 4-1 win-loss record so far, Gilas’s form has looked far from that which enabled the team to qualify for the 2014 FIBA World Cup. The outside shooting and defensive intensity have been inconsistent, and if not for heroics from Gilas first-timer Paul Lee, some results might have been drastically different. This was the first game Lee did not lead Gilas in scoring. Instead, the trio of LA Tenorio, Gary David, and Ranidel De Ocampo paced the Pinoys with 11 points each. Marcus Douthit had a subpar outing, finishing with just 6 markers and 8 boards. He visibly struggled to keep up with former NBA center Hamed Haddadi, who filled the stat-sheet with 11 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assists, 3 blocks, and 1 steal. Iran advances to the championship game and has a chance to repeat as FIBA Asia Cup kings, while Gilas faces China in the battle for third place.

In the day’s final outing, Taiwan upset China for the second straight time in a FIBA Asia tournament, 84-73, and advanced to the championship game to face Iran. Almost a year after beating China in the quarterfinals of the 2013 FIBA Asia Men’s Championships in Manila, the Taiwanese were at it again, leaning on the superb shooting of Liu Cheng and Chen Ying-Chun to repulse the hosts’ challenge. Liu and Chen shot a combined 14/22 from the field and scored 22 and 16 points respectively. Quincy Davis also did well here, contributing 10 points, 9 rebounds, and 2 steals while limiting Chinese phenom Zhou Qi to just 5 markers in 17 minutes. China actually outrebounded Taiwan considerably, 44-31, but this was offset by the fact that coach Wang Huaiyu’s wards turned the ball over 27 times. The Taiwanese exploited this fully, converting 31 points off turnovers. Coach Huang Wan-Lung’s crew also shot much better from the floor, making 52% of their shots compared to just 37% for the Chinese. Makan Kelanbaike and Tao Hanlin carried the lost cause for China with 22 and 17 points respectively, while Gao Shang tallied 13 markers. This is definitely an unexpected and sorry result for China, which already failed to make the semifinals last year and now might finish fourth place at home should they lose to the Philippines tomorrow.

Final day match-ups:
Singapore vs. India for 7th place
Japan vs. Jordan for 5th place
Philippines vs. China for 3rd place
Taiwan vs. Iran for the Championship


Day 7:

JORDAN over INDIA, 69-65
JOR 69 - Al-Dwairi 21, Hussein 10, Wright 8, Al-Sous 7, Abdeen 6, Al-Hamarsheh 6, Abu Ruqayah 5, Eid 4, Al-Awadi 2
IND 65 - Bhriguvanshi 17, Singh Amj 14, Singh P 10, Brar 6, Singh Amr 5, Grewal 5, Pethani 5, Singh J 3, Pari 0, Sivakumar 0, Singh Y 0
QS: 11-17, 21-27, 47-47, 69-65

Ahmad Al-Dwairi dominates in the middle for Jordan.

Amjyot Singh pulls up in traffic for India.

Sinan Eid goes up strong.

JPN 82 - Okada 11, Shonaka 11, Ono 11, Ota 10, Ishizaki 9, Takeuchi K 8, Kikuchi 7, Takeuchi J 5, Harimoto 5, Hiejima 4, Tanaka 1
SIN 48 - Wong 12, Oh 10, Lim 10, Ng H 8, Goh 6, Toh 1, Low 1, Han 0, Soo D 0, Soo P 0, Ng S 0, Ng J 0
QS: 18-11, 38-25, 63-37, 82-48

Hanbin Ng goes up for the one-hander.

Kosuke Takeuchi is challenged by Delvin Goh.

Shohei Kikuchi takes it strong to the hoop.

IRI 76 - Jamshidi 19, Yakhchali 18, Haddadi 11, Mashayekhi 10, Sahakian 7, Zangeneh 5, Lalehzadeh 3, Arghavan 2, Kazemi 1, Kardoust 0
PHI 55 - Tenorio 11, David 11, De Ocampo 11, Douthit 6, Washington 5, Aguilar 4, Lee 4, Dillinger 3, Alas 0, Lanete 0, Belga 0, Fajardo 0
QS: 20-13, 39-28, 61-44, 76-55

Behnam Yakhchali caught fire for Team Melli.

Mohammad Jamshidi is really coming into his own for Iran.

Ranidel De Ocampo tries a slam against Iran.

TAIWAN over CHINA, 84-73
TPE 84 - Liu 22, Chen Y 16, Davis 10, Chou 8, Lu 7, Chen K 7, Hu 6, Lee 6, Chang 2, Chen H 0, Peng 0, Lin 0
CHN 73 - Makan 22, Tao 17, Gao 13, Zhao 7, Zhou 5, Dong 4, Gu 3, Wang 2, Duan 0, He 0
QS: 23-19, 34-34, 59-55, 84-73

Chou Yi-Hsiang and Chen Ying-Chun whoop it up as Taiwan
makes its first FIBA Asia Final in a looong time.

Liu Cheng led the strong-willed Taiwanese with 22 points.

Makan Kelanbaike's 22 markers went down the drain in China's defeat.

Unless otherwise specified, all images are from FIBA-Asia.

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3 Comment

FIBA Asia expert talaga! Sir Flojo!


Gilas has to adjust and sana naman pumayag na SMC ipahiram players nila. Lassiter, Slaughter, Simon, Barroca, etc.


Gilas all the way!