Friday, 23 September 2011

Jordan upsets two-time defending FIBA-Asia titlist Iran, 88-84

Posted by chardyboy on Friday, September 23, 2011 0 comments


Previously unbeaten Iran lost when it mattered most, absorbing a crushing 88-84 loss to Jordan in the quarterfinals of the 26th FIBA-Asia Olympic Qualifiers in Wuhan, China. The upset win now sets up the Jordanians against the winner of the match between Smart Gilas-Pilipinas and Chinese Taipei on Friday, 6 p.m. Manila time.

The game was tight from the opening tip with Iran posting a slim 36-35 advantage at the turn. The two-time defending FIBA Asia champions hiked their lead to five, 62-57, entering the fourth quarter.

But a 31-22 scoring in the final quarter propelled Jordan, who previously had a 2-3 record coming into the game, to victory.

Hamed Hadadi, Iran's 7-foot-2 center who plays for the Memphis Grizzlies, shot 10-of-21 from the field to finish with 27 points.

The two-time MVP of the tournament also had 14 rebounds, seven assists and three block shots for the Iranians, who played minus the injured Samad Nikkhah Bahrami in the first half.

The versatile-forward shook off his ankle injury and played the entire second half to finish with eight points and four rebounds.

Arsalan Kazemi had 13 points and 16 rebounds also for Iran

Sam Daghles paced Jordan with 23 points behind a 7-of-16 shooting clip. He also had four rebounds, five assists and three steals.

Zaid Alkhas buried a three-pointer to put Jordan up, 80-78, with one minute and 45 seconds left in the game clock.

The 6-foot-5 Daghles took over then and scored all of Jordan's last eight points from thefree throw line, including two charities off a Haddadi unsportsmanlike foul with 65 seconds left for an 82-79 spread.

"We played like a baby. We played very bad," said Iran guard Mohammed Hussein.

Jordan's win heavily Gilas, provided that they get past Chinese Taipei. Gilas previously beat Jordan, 72-64. It was a controversial match with Jordan putting the game under protest.

A miscommunication between FIBA Headquarters and FIBA Asia officials led to Marcio Lassiter and Chris Lutz being barred from playing, although FIBA secretary-general Patrick Bauman had allowed both Filipino-American guards to suit up for Gilas.

The winner of the tournament earns an outright berth in the 2012 London Olympics. The second and third placers will join the runners up from Europe, Americas, Africa and Oceania for the Olympic Qualifying Tournament. The top three teams from this tournament will earn the final three spots for the Olympics. — JVP, GMA News


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