Aussie Gems continue winning run; China edge out a fighting Jr Tall Ferns: Asian U18 Basketball

By | October 29, 2018

Aussie Gems (in pic) beat Chinese Taipei on Monday. Phtoto courtesy Twitter handle of FIBA

Bengaluru, 29 Oct 2018: Strong contenders Australia, popularly known as Gems down under, settled down and continued their winning run putting paid to the aspirations of Chinese Taipei 106-66 in their second Division A, Group A match in the FIBA under-18 Women’s Asian Championship at the Kanteerava Indoor Stadium here on Monday.

After the first quarter, which turned out to be physical and ended at 35-23 in favour of Gems, the Aussie girls switched gears and adopted better to the defensive pressure and indulged in fast turnovers to sit pretty at 61-36 at the half-time break.

Every Australian player got her name on to the scoresheet, except the injure Lily Scanlon, who did not take the court for the second day running with experienced Mela Goodchild topping with 27 points. Isabel Palmer (14), skipper Jazmin Shelley (11), Juliva Motuga (12) and Emma Clarke (12) looked in fine fettle in their convincing win.

Later, China who won the age-group championship for four times, are struggling to keep their reputation intact. With Oceania joining the Asian events, China will be competing with Australia and New Zealand, in this age group for the first time. However, the top four teams are assured of a berth in the U19 World Cup next year in Thailand.

China managed to edge out New Zealand who are well-built and play a similar game to Australia, but their erratic shooting with many defensive lapses prevented them from upstaging the Chinese team. However, the junior Tall Ferns did provide some scary moments to the opponents as the lead changed hands ten times but the Kiwis could not sustain the consistency of the first quarter and went down fighting 58-67.

In Division B, Kazakhstan drubbed lowly Samoa 67-51 at the Koramangala Indoor Stadium. Cherish Manumaleuga played her heart out sinking 18 points and she was ably supported by Talita Taufua (11 points). For the winners, Valeriya Motovilova topped the charts with 17 points.

Results: Division A:

Group A: Australia: 106 (Mela Goodchild 27, Isabel Leigh Palmer 14, Juliva Malaeula Motuga 12, Emma Clarke 12, Jazmin Pamela Shelley 11, Isobel Anne Anstey 10) bt Chinese Taipei: 66 (Yu-Chieh Chen 21, Chia-Jung Lin 17).

Group B: China: 67 (Chen Mingling15, Yuan LI 13, Ming Zheng 12, Ziting Tang 12, Yutong Liu 10) bt New Zealand 58 (Charlisse Leger-Walker 22, Charlotte Whitakear 12, Leah Mafua 10)

Division B

Group B: Kazakhstan: 67 (Alexandra Saitova 10, Valeriya Motovilova 17) bt Samoa: 51 (Cherish Manumaleuga 18, Talita Taufua 11).