Monday, December 23, 2002

Asian Junior Men - Taiwan's top 3 dream dashed

Taiwan suffered another heartbreaking loss last night, when they lost to long time rival South Korea 90-117 and saw the chance going to Kuala Lumpur next year pass them by. With the loss, Taiwan Junior is out of the final four of the 17th Asian Basketball Championship for Junior Men.

Taiwan is only good enough for the third place in Group I and will play Japan for the 5th place, the worst finish for Taiwan Junior since 1995, on December 25. South Korea advance with No.1 in Group I. Qatar beat Saudi Arabia to gain the No.2 seed. In Group II, Japan upset China 85-83 yesterday but still finished third.

Taiwan was plagued by foul trouble only 5 minutes into the game. Frontlines Wu Dai-hao, Tsun Wen-din and Wu Jun-hsiung all were whistled for two personal fouls. Wu was tripped by a Korean player and twisted his ankle. He was unable after that and was in cast after the game. To protest the unfair officiating, Taiwan head coach Hsu Jin-tse almost pulled his team out and refused to play.

The game is already over by the third quarter. Wu Dai-hao was on the sideline, Tsun and Wu Jun-hsiung fouled out. Taiwan can only put five little guys on the court and finished the game.

Chen Shi-jay led Taiwan Junior with 27 points. PG Chen Shi-nian had 16. Tsun Wen-din had 13. Lee Chih-ming and Wu Dai-hao had 8 points each, with Wu scoring all his points in the first five minutes. After the game, coach Hsu expressed his disappointment with the results but said he could do nothing about it.

Dec. 22 Second Round Scores:
Japan 85-83 China
South Korea 117-90 Taiwan
Iran 89-53 Kuwait
Qatar beat Saudi Arabia(Score unavailable)

**Second Round Standings
Group I
1. South Korea 2-1
2. Qatar 2-1
3. Taiwan 1-2
4. Saudi Arabia 1-2

Group II
1. Iran 2-1
2. China 2-1
3. Japan 2-1
4. Kuwait 0-3

**Upcoming games
Semifinals: South Korea vs. China, Qatar vs. Iran
5th-place game: Taiwan vs. Japan
7th-place game: Kuwait vs. Saudi Arabia