*India ends the preliminary round with a 1-1 record which it will carry into the second round that starts on 12th September*

New Delhi/Bengaluru, 10th September 2016: After yesterday’s opening win over Philippines, India fell to Chinese Taipei on Day 2 of the FIBA Asia Challenge that is underway at the Twelve Thousand People Sport Hall in Tehran, Iran.

Taipei beat India through decisive second half

India started the game with guards Talwinderjit ‘TJ’ Sahi and Vishesh Bhriguvanshi, forwards Yadwinder Singh and Amjyot Singh, with the 6ft 9.5 inch Amritpal Singh playing centre. Chinese Taipei’s naturalized player from USA, Quincy Davis and Yadwinder traded opening buckets, before Taipei closed out the first quarter with a 26-20 lead.

TJ Sahi has eyes only for the rim on Day 2 of the FIBA Asia Challenge. Image credit- FIBA Asia.

TJ Sahi has eyes only for the rim on Day 2 of the FIBA Asia Challenge. Image credit- FIBA Asia.

India chose to stick with its starters in Q1, making its first substitution 4 minutes into the second period, with Prasanna Venkatesh coming in for Yadwinder Singh. Within a few minutes Venkatesh began making an impact, grabbing an offensive rebound that was followed by a tip in by Amritpal Singh, to bring India within 3 points of Taipei. Late in the second quarter, power forward Rikin Pethani got his first minutes of the tournament, giving Amjyot Singh much needed rest. Taipei meanwhile continued to rotate its players en masse to ensure fresh legs on the floor. India had done an excellent job defensively to restrict Taipei to 15 points in the second quarter, and at halftime trailed 35-41

With little to separate the two teams in the first half, conventional wisdom has shown that third quarters prove decisive. The same was the case today, as the fresher Taipei team repeated its aggression from the first quarter. Captain Cheng Liu took the lead, scoring all of his team’s 10 points to start the second half with a 10-3 run India tried to catch up via Vishesh Bhriguvanshi, but the score at the end of the third quarter read 67-50 in favour of Taipei.

Bhriguvanshi and TJ Sahi connected on some quick threes to give India a glimmer of hope for a fourth quarter comeback, but Taipei proved equal to the task.

Centre Amritpal Singh had a double double in the loss against Chinese Taipei. Image credit- FIBA Asia.

Centre Amritpal Singh had a double double in the loss against Chinese Taipei. Image credit- FIBA Asia.

Bhriguvanshi ended with a game high 34 points, including 5 threes and went 9/10 from the freethrow line. However, the key difference was that while Bhriguvanshi and Amritpal built on their good performances from yesterday, top scorer Amjyot Singh was restricted to just 6 points in the entire game.

India will carry forward its 1-1 record into the second round, which will begin on 12th September, where it will face Group A’s teams (China, Jordan and Kazakhstan) for a subsequent spot in the knockouts.

With the league stages continuing today and tomorrow, clarity on India’s final preliminary group position and opening second round opponent is still awaited.

Results on 10/9/2016

Chinese Taipei (Yi-Hsiang Chou 23, Quincy Davis 18 pts & 14 reb, Cheng Liu 13 pts & 10 reb) bt India (Vishesh Bhriguvanshi 34 pts & 3 stl, Amritpal Singh 14 pts & 10 reb) 90-66 [26-20, 15-15, 26-15, 23-16]

About the FIBA Asia Challenge 2016

The FIBA Asia Challenge was previously known as the FIBA Asia Cup. It is the first step in the qualification process for the 2017 FIBA Asia Cup.

The top 5 teams will earn for their respective sub-zones an extra berth at the 2017 FIBA Asia Cup, which will be the first inter-continental tournament featuring teams from both Asia and Oceania (i.e. Australia & New Zealand). The top teams from the 2017 FIBA Asia Cup in turn qualify for the 2019 FIBA World Cup.

The 2016 FIBA Asia Challenge will be held at the Twelve Thousand People Sport Hall, located in the north & south of the main street of the Azadi Sport Complex.  Host Iran is the defending champion.

Format

The initial round of the tournament will be played in a round robin format. The 12 participating teams have been divided into 4 groups of 3 teams each, and each team will play the 2 teams that are in the same group as them.

Preliminary Round Grouping

Group A: China, Jordan, Kazakhstan

Group B: Philippines, India, Chinese Taipei

Group C: Iran, Qatar, Iraq

Group D: Japan, Korea, Thailand

All 12 preliminary round teams will advance to the second round, where they will be divided into 2 teams of 6 each. Each team will then play the 3 new teams in its group. The top 4 teams from each of the second round groups will then move on quarter-finals, followed by the semifinals and finals.

India’s Tournament Schedule (all times IST)
Round 2

Starting 12th September, opponent and match time to be confirmed.

For more information please visit: www.fiba.com/asia/challenge/2016

India’s Squad

The final 12 members of the squad who will represent India at the FIBA Asia Challenge were selected at the end of a nearly one-month long training camp held at NMAM Institute of Technology (NITTE) in Karkala, Udupi district of coastal Karnataka.

While the Indian side remains largely unchanged from last month’s 38th William Jones Cup International Basketball Tournament, there are a couple of key changes. Veteran swingman and defensive stopper Yadwinder Singh returns to the team, and is expected to provide much needed versatility on both ends of the floor in terms of matchups. Also, teenager Hariram Ragupathy, one of the stars from India’s historic 8th place finish at the 2016 FIBA Asia U18 Championship, makes his debut into the senior team.

A small ceremony was held at the NITTE campus to bid farewell to the Indian squad, which was attended by Mr Chander Mukhi Sharma, Secretary General of BFI.

“On behalf of BFI I convey my sincere thanks to NITTE University management, who for the last two years have been continuously providing us all the training facilities for the Indian team. This is my first visit here, but this is one of the best campus facilities I have seen,” said Mr Sharma.

Addressing the departing contingent, he said, “Ultimately, it is the outcome of your efforts which will benefit basketball in India. You are the players who are icons for all other players in the country. So I wish you all the success and that you put up a performance that is even better than in all the previous championships that you have attended.”

Senior Men’s Squad for the FIBA Asia Challenge 2016

Jersey
No
Family Name(s)

/Last Name

First Name(s)

/Given Name

Place of Birth

(City and State)

Date of Birth
(dd/mm/yyyy)
Height
(cm)
(ft & inches)
Weight

(Kg)

Position
4 Bhullar Arshpreet Singh Jalandhar Punjab 02/10/1996 190 (6’ 3’’) 86 G/F
9 Bhriguvanshi Vishesh Varanasi Uttar Pradesh 13/09/1991 195 (6’ 5’’) 95 G/F
10 Amritpal Singh Ganna Pind Punjab

 

05/01/1991 207 (6’ 9.5’’) 110 C
12 Philip Basil Sulthanbathery Kerala 10/01/1991 184 (6’) 76 G/F
14 Yadwinder Singh Rasulpur Khurd Punjab 30/12/1986 198 (6’ 6’’) 95 F
15 Pethani Rikin Sajiavadar Amreli Gujarat

 

02/12/1990 203 (6’ 8”) 104 C
22 Bhardwaj Ravi Chandigarh Chandigarh

 

31/10/1992 207 (6’ 9”) 100 F/C
25 Ragupathy Hariram Chennai Tamil Nadu 24/04/1998 184 (6’) 72 SG
27 Amjyot Singh Chandigarh Punjab/ Haryana 27/01/1992 203 (6’ 8”) 104 F
46 Sivakumar Prasanna Venkatesh Gobichettipalayam Tamil Nadu 25/09/1992 186 (6’ 1”) 85 G/F
66 Pari Akilan Chennai Tamil Nadu 20/07/1989 180 (5’ 10’’) 70 PG
99 Talwinderjit Singh Patiala Punjab

 

20/10/1986 182 (5’ 11’’) 80 PG

*PG – Point Guard / Feeder, G – Guard, F – Forward, G/F – Wing, PF – Power Forward, C – Centre, PF/C – Post

13) Coach: Sat Prakash Yadav

14) Coach: C. V. Sunny

15) Physiotherapist: Nikhil N. P.

16) Manager: Shaktikumar Mahipatsinh Gohil

17) FIBA Commissioner: Norman Swaroop Issac

18) FIBA Referee: Atanu Banerjee

Team Ekalavyas
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