Kathmandu, 14th May 2014: The 3rd South Asian Basketball Association (SABA) Championship 2014 tipped off yesterday in Nepal’s capital city. The tournament, which began on 13th May will conclude on the 17th, and is being played on a round robin league format. Five South Asian teams— defending champions Bangladesh, hosts Nepal, Bangladesh and the island nations of Sri Lanka and Maldives are in the fray. The team with the best record at the end of this championship after four matches, will progress from the South Asian region to the Asia Cup tentatively scheduled for mid-July in Wuhan (China).
In the latest 2014 edition, India opened its campaign earlier this evening with a convincing 95-39 win over Bangladesh. Bangladesh had won a tense opening match against Sri Lanka yesterday and was confident coming in today against South Asian giant India. However, from the opening tip it was all India’s way and Bangladesh were left trying to play catch up for almost four full quarters.
As expected, India’s giant frontcourt of 7ft centre Amrit Pal Singh, 6ft 10 inch Amjyot Singh dominated their much shorter opponents in the paint with multiple rebounds and offensive putbacks. Not to be left behind, India’s perimeter players were also effective from long range. With India striking from seamlessly from inside and outside, Bangladesh players had the tiring job of having to continuously guard almost half the basketball court. India’s Head Coach Scott Flemming used all 12 of his players in the rotation.
Defensively, India pressing defense didn’t allow Bangladesh to settle down into an offensive rhythm. As expected, India’s excellent team defense converted into easy fast break opportunities which led India to a convincing 51-21 lead at halftime. The final score of 95-39 underlined the yawning gap between India and the rest of the South Asian teams in this competition. India will go into game two against Sri Lanka tomorrow at 2:00 PM Nepal time, high on confidence.
India 95 (Amjyot Singh 16) bt Bangladesh 39 (Biswash Kumar Mithun 14) [Scores at the end of each quarter: 19-10; 51-21; 78-28; 95-39]
Upcoming Schedule for India matches
Thursday, 15th May 2014, 2:00 PM (Nepal time): India vs Sri Lanka
Friday, 16th May 2014, 2:00 PM (Nepal time): India vs Nepal
Saturday, 17th May 2014, 11:00 AM (Nepal time): Maldives vs India