THE 2019 edition of the FIBA 3×3 U18 Asia Cup concluded at the weekend with teams from Japan and Australia topping the men’s and women’s divisions, respectively, while the Philippine women’s squad fashioned out a podium finish at third place.
Took place from Aug. 22 to 24 at Cyberjaya, Malaysia, teams Japan and Australia proved their mettle against solid competitions on their way to the top.
Japan concluded its campaign by beating Kazakhstan, 21-13, in the final of the men’s division.
It enjoyed an unbeaten campaign although it survived a fright in the semifinals, forced to overtime before defeating Australia, 18-17, in a tightly fought contest.
Qualifier Australia claimed bronce after beating number one seed China, 21-17, in a tight game.
Seishin Yokochi was named most valuable player after a game-high nine points in the final. Daniel Foster from Australia and Kazakhstan’s Arsentiy Kushniruk joined the Japanese rising star on the team of the tournament.
In the women’s side, Australia had a perfect 5-0 record and dominated Japan in the final with a decisive 21-10 victory.
Australia’s Shyla Heal bagged the MVP award after leading her team in scoring and hitting a game-high eight points in the final. Japan’s Saori Yasue also made the team of tournament after leading all scorers with 42 points and was joined by Kristine Cayabyab from the Philippines.
Cayabyab, along with teammates Camille Clarin, Ella Fajardo and Angelica Surada, for their part, managed to carry the Philippine team to a bronze finish by beating number one seed China, 14-11, in the fight for third place.
The Philippine women’s team finished with a 3-2 record overall, capped by their victory over the Chinese with Surada and Cayabyab finishing with five points each with Clarin adding three and Fajardo one point, respectively.
The team beat Malaysia and New Zealand in the earlier rounds before falling to eventual champion Australia in the semifinals, 15-12.
Its counterparts in the men’s division, meanwhile, finished fifth in the 17-team field with a 2-1 record.
The team, composed of Gerry Abadiano, Terrence Fortea, Karl Quiambao and Carl Tamayo, topped its pool to reach the knockout stage before falling to China, 21-17, in the quarterfinals.
The final standings at the FIBA 3×3 U18 Asia Cup were: (Men’s) Japan, Kazakhstan, Australia, China, the Philippines, New Zealand, Mongolia, Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, Vietnam, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, India, Thailand, Chinese Taipei, South Korea and Maldives; (Women’s) Australia, Japan, Philippines, China, New Zealand, Thailand, India, Mongolia, Kazakhstan, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Turkmenistan, Chinese Taipei and Maldives. — Michael Angelo S. Murillo