Five players finished with double-digit scores as Taiwan easily cruised past India 113-88 at the Ota Gymnasium in Tokyo, Japan, yesterday afternoon to pick up their first win of the fourth FIBA Asia Cup Basketball Tournament.
Other than failing to box out the Indian rebounders that resulted in several easy second-chance baskets for India in the first half, Taiwan outplayed their opponents in every facet of the game en route to a much-needed victory.
“We definitely played better on defense compared with yesterday [against Japan], but giving up 88 points shows that there is still a lot of room for improvement,” Taiwan head coach Hsu Chin-che said after the game.
His troops finally found their rhythm on offense after struggling against Japan the night before.
Despite two quick fouls on Tseng Wen-ding that limited the big man to less than 30 minutes of floor time in the game, Taiwan were able to go deep into their bench, with Doug Creighton leading the way with 15 points on the day to pick up the slack.
Also starring was speedy guard Chang Tsong-hsien, who played his best game since last month’s Jones Cup with a game-high 20 points to lift his country past India.
Chang shot a solid four of five from behind the three-point line to account for a quarter of Taiwan’s 16 three-pointers.
Next up for Chang and his comrades this evening is an uphill battle against Iran, who have beaten Taiwan in their past four meetings in the Jones Cup tournament held in Taiwan.
A win for Taiwan would all but seal a bid for advancement to the next round, while a loss would put more pressure on Taiwan to win their final first-round game against Qatar.
Yesterday’s other scores:
‧ Phlippines 85, Uzbekistan 50
‧ Iran 85, Qatar 75 (overtime)
‧ Lebanon 89, China 69