Indian women cagers falter in FIBA Asia Championship opener

Indian cagers started their campaign on the wrong foot after going down to Chinese Taipei 61-92 in the Group A fixture of the 26th FIBA Asia Women's Championship opener here on Saturday.

PTI| Updated: Aug 29, 2015, 20:48 PM IST
Indian women cagers falter in FIBA Asia Championship opener

Wuhan, China: Indian cagers started their campaign on the wrong foot after going down to Chinese Taipei 61-92 in the Group A fixture of the 26th FIBA Asia Women's Championship opener here on Saturday.

Chinese Taipei, who finished fourth in the 2013 version of the tournament, were the clear favourite entering this game and proved their supremacy with an 8-0 start. India did manage to stem the flow ending the first quarter down 11 to 22.

The second quarter was India's best of the game. Managing to match Chinese Taipei shot-for-shot, the second quarter scoring was almost even between the teams.

Entering the second half with a 12-point lead, Chinese Taipei further extended the gap between the teams outscoring India 29 to 18 in the third quarter. Chinese Taipei's Y. Wei led the scoring with 20 points, while S. Peng and Y. Lin contributed with 12 and 11 points respectively.

In the fourth quarter, Chinese Taipei continued to drain buckets with ease, thus maintaining their huge lead and cruising to an easy victory.

Poojamol Subhashmon, from Kerala, led India in scoring ending the game with 17 points while Bhandavya HM, India's youngest player at 17 years old, played confidently, although out of position at point guard, to score 8 points. Smruthi Radhakrishnan added 3 assists, while Shireen Limaye led the team in rebounding pulling down 7 rebounds.

India's young and largely inexperienced side failed to maintain their composure on the big stage and turned the ball over a massive 33 times.

Clearly, the team missed starting point guard, Kavita Akula, who was made unavailable for the event due to her college career starting in the U.S.

Coach Garcia will need to ensure that his players take better care of the ball going forward in the tournament.

"We competed quite well for around 25 minutes of the game against one of the top 4 teams. Then, our lack of stamina brought us down. Obviously, we missed the services of our starting point guard Kavita Akula. But I must say that we competed better against them than we did in Bangkok [in the 2013 FIBA Asia Championship]," said coach Garcia.

Their next opponent will be Japan, who they will face tomorrow.

Result: Chinese Taipei (Y. Wei 20, S. Peng 12, Y. Lin 11) bt India (Poojamol Subhashmon 17, Anitha Paul Durai 8, B. Mahesha 8, J. Skaria 8) 92-61 (22-11, 15-14, 29-18, 26-18).