Iran makes it look easy in rout of Malaysia
Iran still proved to be a formidable force and one of the top teams in Asia as it made little effort in beating Malaysia, 115-25, at the start of the FIBA Asian Championships at the MOA Arena in Pasay.
The two-time Asian champions were all out in both defense and offense even up to the last seconds of the game to start their campaign in a banging note and made it known that they are still a team to beat in the tournament.
Former Phoenix Suns center Hamed Haddadi led Iran’s attack as he scattered 21 points in only 13 minutes of play.
The 7-foot-2 center manned the shaded lane and only allowed the Malaysian team to score only three points in the first quarter.
Malaysia and Iran are both in group C, which includes China and South Korea.
Tomorrow will be the true test for Iran as it will face South Korea, team Philippines’ long-time nemesis in international competitions.
Meanwhile, Gilas Pilipinas will battle Saudi Arabia later, 8:30 p.m. before embarking on tougher teams like Jordan and Chinese Taipei. (Chris Capulso)
Gilas starts FIBA campaign against Saudi Arabia
Philippine national team Gilas Pilipinas will kick off their 27th FIBA Asia championship campaign 8:30 p.m. today against Saudi Arabia at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
Though there’s no doubting that the caliber of China, Korea, Iran and other participants in the tournament, Gilas head coach Chot Reyes is confident that the preparations that have rendered during the off-season is enough to pull off a surprise.
The veteran mentor admitted that they may be shorter against the taller teams but the skills and speed, Gilas is not far behind.
Naturalized player Marcus Douthit is the tallest player in the team at 6”11 followed by Junemar Fajardo at 6”10 and Japeth Aguilar at 6”9. (Rommel Fuertes)