Gilas Pilipinas Nearly Top FIBA Asia over Iran, 71-85
MANILA, Philippines – Iran Giants, overcoming home court disadvantage took all the big-hearted smart Gilas Pilipinas could offer before hacking out a thrilling 85-71 victory in the gold medal match at the 27th FIBA Asia Men’s Championship at the mall of Asia Arena, Pasay City here, August 11. Without the center Marcos Douthit and outside with Iran Giants, Gilas Pilipinas turned to be driven only by fighting spirits boosted by Filipino fans but Hadadi of Iran, saven-foot-two center delivered unstoppable shots on the crucial part of the nerve-fuzzling game including a jump shot in the last quarter. Witnessed by thousand of Filipino spectators, the cold night was heated as the game started in a roller-coaster encounter with both teams delivering continuous flow of shots, Iran with the lead 35-34 in the first half. With their control and irrecordable reports of fast moves, big men of Gilas, Aguilar and de Ocampo displayed very tricky hand as they made devasting hook shots but they are too small for Hadadi, who was named MVP for the third time, making earth shaking lay-ups to give the Iran the lead, 62-53. Boasting their courage with home court advantage, Gilas Pilipinas fouled out Hadadi but before the last three minutes remaining on the clock, Hadadi with Bahrami, forward of Iran scored for the final time to put the game, 78-63 Iran with the lead. Gilas Pilipinas in the last minutes, never tried to lose hope win the game, but Iran Giants seened to just waste the time remaining on the shot duck and with Kamrany of Iran making the game difficult for Gilas, the match was concluded, 85-71, in favor of Iran. “No pain, no spain,” quoted by Gilas Pilipinas players. Even if the Gilas did not made into the very top, still there is reason to enjoy because Gilas qualifies for next year’s FIBA World Cup in Spain.
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