Saturday, August 30, 2003

22nd Asian Championship Schedule

■Preliminary Round

Group A: Lebanon, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Hong Kong
Group B: Korea, India, Malaysia, Kuwait
Group C: China, Taiwan, Syria, Iran
Group D: Qatar, Japan, Philippines, Jordan
Format: Each group plays a single round-robin
Venue: Group A & C at Tienruin Gymnasium ; Group B & D at Heilongjian University Gymnasium

Group A
1000 Uzbekistan-Hong Kong
1400 Lebanon-Kazakhstan
Group B
1600 India-Kuwait
1930 Korea-Malaysia
Group C
1600 Taiwan-Iran
1930 China-Syria
Group D
1000 Qatar-Jordan
1400 Japan-Philippines

Group A
1000 Hong Kong-Lebanon
1400 Kazakhstan-Uzbekistan
Group B
1600 India-Malaysia
1930 Korea-Kuwait
Group C
1600 Iran-Syria
1930 China-Taiwan
Group D
1000 Philippines-Qatar
1400 Japan-Jordan

Group A
1000 Kazakhstan-Hong Kong
1400 Lebanon-Uzbekistan
Group B
1600 Kuwait-Malaysia
1930 Korea-India
Group C
1600 Taiwan-Syria
1930 China-Iran
Group D
1000 Qatar-Japan
1400 Philippines-Jordan

■Second Round

Group I: A1, B2, C1, D2
Group II: A2, B1, C2, D1
Group III: A3, B4, C3, D4
Group IV: A4, B3, C4, D3
Format: Each group plays a single round-robin

Group III(Tienruin Gymnasium)
1000 A3-D4
1400 B4-C3
Group I(Tienruin Gymnasium)
1600 A1-D2
1930 B2-C1
Group IV(Heilongjian University Gymnasium)
1000 A4-D3
1400 B3-C4
Group II(Heilongjian University Gymnasium)
1600 A2-D1
1930 B1-C2

Group III(Tienruin Gymnasium)
1000 B4-D4
1400 A3-C3
Group II(Tienruin Gymnasium)
1600 C2-A2
1930 B1-D1
Group IV(Heilongjian University Gymnasium)
1000 A4-C4
1400 B3-D3
Group I(Heilongjian University Gymnasium)
1600 B2-D2
1930 A1-C1

Group III(Tienruin Gymnasium)
1000 A3-B4
1400 D4-C3
Group I(Tienruin Gymnasium)
1600 A1-B2
1930 D2-C1
Group IV(Heilongjian University Gymnasium)
1000 A4-B3
1400 D3-C4
Group I(Heilongjian University Gymnasium)
1600 A2-B1
1930 D1-C2

■Final Round

Ranking Games
(Heilongjian University Gymnasium)
1400 III4-IV4(15th-16th)
1600 III3-IV3(13th-14th)
1930 III2-IV2(11th-12th)

(Tienruin Gymnasium)
1400 III1-IV1(9th-10th)

Semifinals(Tienruin Gymnasium)
1600 I2-II1
1930 I1-II2

Ranking Games(Heilongjian University Gymnasium)
1400 I4-II4(7th-8th)
1600 I3-II3(5th-6th)

Finals(Tienruin Gymnasium)
1500 3rd-place Game: Semifinals losers meet
1930 Championship Game: Semifinals winners meet

1. All games involving host China will be scheduled at 19:30
2. Second round and finals schedule could be changed due to TV broadcast

WUG – Final ranking

Russia will meet Serbia-Montenegro in the gold medal game today (Aug. 31). China meets Canada for the bronze medal.

Ranking Game results:
5/6: Bulgaria 76-72 Turkey
7/8: Australia 91-88 Ukraine
9/10: Estonia 80-78 Germany
11/12: Sweden 86-81 Mexico
13/14: Czech 107-95 Korea
15/16: Japan 112-105(OT) Taiwan
17/18: South Africa 69-56 Hong Kong
19. Kazakhstan

*Women’s final ranking
Gold: China, Silver: Italy, Bronze: Russia
4. Taiwan, 5. Serbia-Montenegro, 6. USA, 7. Czech, 8. Ireland, 9. Slovenia, 10. Korea, 11. Finland, 12. Japan, 13. Canada, 14. Thailand, 15. Hungary, 16. Mexico, 17. South Africa

WUG – Taiwan lost to Japan in heartbreaker

Taiwan could not stop the furious rally by Japan and lost in overtime, 105-112, in the final ranking game (15th-16th) of the 2003 World University Games. Chang Chih-feng and Chen Hsin-an had 37 and 35 points respectively in the heartbreaking loss.

Led by Chang Chih-feng’s four three-pointers, Taiwan jumped to an early lead in the first quarter, leading by as many as 19 points. But the Japanese controlled the boards and came back.

Taiwan still led by five with 1:44 remaining in the game, but Japan made three consecutive three-pointers to pull ahead by two. Wu Yang-huei’s two free-throws with 4 seconds left leveled the score at 94-94. The game went into overtime as Japan failed to make the desperation shot.

Japan quickly decided the outcome in the extra session after a 7-0 run. Taiwan settled for the 16th-place in their debut in the WUG, while Japan was ranked 15th. Taiwan was 2-4 in six games.

Chen Hsin-an scored 35 points for the second straight game, shooting an astonishing 13-for-15 from the two-point range but only 1-for-9 from 3-PT and 6-of-8 from the charity stripe. Chang Chih-feng was even more eye-catching with his 37 points outburst, including 8 three-pointers.

For the entire tournament, Taiwan counted on Chen and Chang. Chen Hsin-an averaged 22 points, 6.2 rebounds and 2.3 assists while Chang averaged 19.2 points and 4.2 rebounds. Chen and Chang both ranked in the top six in tournament scoring.

Ironically, both Chen and Chang are banned from the national team play this year by the CTBA (Chinese Taipei Basketball Association) – Chen for skipping the Asian Games last year because of participation in the Sacramento Kings training camp, Chang for skipping NT training camp while playing for a Div-II team in China.

With NT’s shaky outside shooting, they can definitely use the perimeter scoring of Chen and Chang. Too bad they can’t play for the national team in Harbin (Asian Championship).

Taiwan will meet Japan again in WUG ranking game

Taiwan will meet Japan again in the final ranking game (15th-16th) of the World University Games as they beat Kazakhstan but lost to Czech Republic on Aug. 28 and 29 in advancing games.

Led by Chang Chih-feng’s 19 points, Taiwan beat Kazakhstan, 71-59, on Aug. 28 and grabbed its second win in the games. Chen Hsin-an had 12 and Chien Ming-fu had 11 in the victory.

In the following day Taiwan had trouble containing the inside attack of the Czech Republic and wound up losing, 86-98. However Chen Hsin-an finally had a break-thru game by exploding for 35 points (7-14 3-PT) in 37 minutes. Chien Ming-fu had 16.

WUG Men’s ranking game:
1/2 Russia vs. Serbia-Montenegro
3/4 China vs. Canada
5/6 Turkey vs. Bulgaria
7/8 Australia vs. Ukraine
9/10 Germany vs. Estonia
11/12 Mexico - Sweden
13/14 Korea vs. Czech
15/16 Taiwan vs. Japan
17/18 Hong Kong vs. South Africa

Note – Taiwan Women will meet Russia in WUG bronze medal game.

Tuesday, August 26, 2003

Asian Championship – Taiwan in same group with China

Taiwan is placed in the same preliminary group with China, Syria and Iran in the 22nd Asian Championship, as the draw results is announced today in China. Once again, Taiwan has to face unfamiliar opponents from West Asia on their way to challenge the top 8.

Draw Results:
GROUP A – Lebanon, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Hong Kong
GROUP B – South Korea, India, Malaysia, Kuwait
GROUP C – China, Taiwan, Syria, Iran
GROUP D – Philippines, Japan, Qatar, Jordan

As China is the hands-down favorite to win the group, Syria will be the toughest opponent for Taiwan, who finished an all-time worst 7th-place in Asian Championship two years ago. Syria was the Cinderella story two years ago by advancing to the semifinal.

Big men will be the key for Taiwan NT, since all three opponents are much taller inside. They have to protect the rebounds and play tougher defense to keep opponents from dominating inside, which is not an easy task for these Taiwanese youngsters. Tsun Wen-din, Wu Dai-hao and Tien Lei are all younger than 22 years-old.

Sunday, August 24, 2003

Chien Ming-fu leads Taiwan to first win in WUG

165cm “Little Giant” Chien Ming-fu scored all of his 18 points in the second half on 7-8 shooting as Taiwan edged Japan, 85-82, and finally got their first victory in the World University Games.

Sitting out the first half, Chien was inserted when starting point guard Lee Chih-ming committed his fourth foul. In 15 minutes, Chien teared Japan apart with his dazzling speed. Chien’s two free-throws with 11.2 seconds remaining iced the 3-point victory for Taiwanese.

Chen Hsin-an topped the team with 21 points, although shooting 1-7 from the three-point range. Chang Chih-feng had 14. Japan was led by Hiroyuki Kinoshita’s 18 points. Kyosuke Setoyama had 14. Identical twins Joji Takeuchi had 11 points and Kosuke Takeuchi with 7 points, both pulling down 7 baords.

Thursday, August 21, 2003

WUG – Taiwan 81-99 Mexico

Chang Chih-feng again paced Taiwan NT with a team-high 16 points but he was unable to beat Mexico on his own. Taiwan lost to Mexico, 81-99, in the second group game of the WUG in Daegu, and finished last-place in the preliminary round.

Chen Hsin-an turned in a disappointing 5-for-20, 14-point performance. Taiwan was beaten on the boards by the Mexicans, trailing 23-52 in that department. They will have to play for the No. 13-20 classification games.

Wednesday, August 20, 2003

Taiwan lost to Yugo in WUG opener

Taiwan lost to Serbia-Montenegro, 89-104, in their opening game of the World University Games, which is held in Daegu, Korea. Chang Chih-feng led Taiwan, which led 44-40 in halftime, with 21 points (4 3-PT) and 5 rebounds. While Chen Hsin-an had 15. Taiwan will meet Mexico tomorrow in their second and last game in the preliminaries.
Quarter score: 16-21, 44-40, 67-71, 89-104

Saturday, August 16, 2003

Taiwan NT Update

Philippines tour concluded
Taiwan NT tied PBA’s Purefood TJ Hot Dogs, 74-74, in the sixth and last warmup games of the Philippines tour and finished the tour with 3 wins, 2 ties and one loss. They defeated another PBA team, Shell Turbo Charges, 74-66, in the previous game.

Taiwan NT will be back to Taiwan today and continue training before going back to Philippines again for the NBL Open Championship (See below).

BAP-NBL National Open Championship
Sources say the eighth team, San Miguel All-Stars, is being added to the BAP-NBL National Open Championship to complete the 8-team field. Taiwan NT is one of 4 foreign teams invited to the tourney, which will be held from Sep. 11-17. CTBA says Taiwan NT will head for Harbin, China directly after the tournament.

Wednesday, August 13, 2003

Taiwan NT edges Philippines Young Men, 85-84

Nearly blowing a 12-point lead, Taiwan NT held on and edged Philippines Young Men NT, 85-84 last night (Aug.12) in the fourth warmup game of the Philippines tour. They will meet PBA’s Shell Turbo Charges tonight.

Taiwan NT record in the Philippines tour:
Game 1: Taiwan 90-90 Pampanga Bulls (NBL)
Game 2: Taiwan 61-78 Barangay Ginebra Kings (PBA)
Game 3: Taiwan 66-65 Philippines NT
Game 4: Taiwan 85-84 Philippines Junior NT

At the same time, Taiwan NT will visit the Philippines once again next month. This time they will participate in the “BAP-NBL National Open Championship”, which will be a 7-team tournament including four foreign teams.

The tournament will be held in Cebu City from Sep. 10-17. The participating teams are: Taiwan NT, Jordan NT, Qatar NT, Satria Muda Britama (Runner-up in Indonesian League), Cebuana Lhuillier RP Team, NBL All-Stars North, NBL All-Stars South

Tuesday, August 12, 2003

Taiwan NT lost to Ginebra, beat Philippines NT

Taiwan NT, who is touring Philippines for the preparation of the upcoming ABC Championship, lost to PBA’s Ginebra, 61-78, in a friendly game on Aug.10. They did edge Philippines NT, 66-65, the next day thanks to Tien Lei’s go-ahead layup with 18 seconds remaining. Taiwan NT will meet Philippines Junior NT tonight(Aug.12) in the fourth warmup game.

Saturday, August 09, 2003

Taiwan NT levels Pampanga 90-90

Taiwan NT leveled Pampanga Bulls 90-90 in the first warmup game of its Philippines tour. The game was held on Aug.7 at the Bren Z. Guiao Convention Center, City of San Fernando, with no overtime period being played.

The Taiwanese clung to a slim 29-28 lead after the first period. From there, it was an all-Pampanga show as Dave Bautista, Billy Bansil and Marlon Tadeo defied their much taller opponents to take the half, 53-48.

The Bulls then got a big boost after Taiwan main man Tien Lei got his fifth and final foul with still over seven minutes to play. However, the Taiwanese rallied to take the lead with less than a minute to play behind Tsun Wen-din and Wu Dai-hao, 90-89. Tadeo then drew a foul with 25 seconds to play but could only split his free throws to tie the score at 90-90. Taiwan NT then failed to score as the Bulls recovered possession. Ariel Garcia missed the potential game winner as his jumper with 1.8 seconds to go bounced off the rim.

Bautista, the current NBL MVP race leader, topped the Bulls with 20 points. Bansil and Tadeo added 17 points each. Chiu Chi-yi paced the visitors with 18 points while Wu added 15. Yen Shin-shu tallied 11 points, all in the first half.

PAMPANGA (90) – D. Bautista 20, Bansil 17, Tadeo 17, Santos 12, Tolentino 6, A. Garcia 5, Duyag 5, Alberto 2, MaƱalac 2, Yambao 2, Manlutac 1, Coronel 1, R. Garcia 0, S. Garcia 0, Cocjin 0.

TAIWAN NT (90) – Chiu Chih-yi 18, Wu Dai-hao 15, Tsun Wen-din 14, Yen Shin-shu 11, Tien Lei 10, Chen Chih-chung 7, Chen Huei 5, Yang Che-yi 4, Hong Chi-chao 4, Lin Chi-jay 2, Wu Chih-wei 0, Wu Chih-yun 0, Lee Chi-yi 0, Ho Sho-jen 0, Yang Yu-ming 0.

Period Scores: 28-29, 53-48, 72-67, 90-90.

Wednesday, August 06, 2003

Super League opens on November 21st

Key dates and more details were announced after the second meeting of the Super League Committee meeting yesterday. The Super League will open its first season on November 21st and each team will play a 24-game schedule.

Teams(7): Yulon Dinos, BCC Mars, Bank of Taiwan, Taiwan Beer, Jutai Technology, Dacin Construction, SINA Lions
Regular Season: Nov. 21, 2003 - Apr. 11, 2004
Playoffs: Starts on Apr. 15, 2004
Venue: Taipei Physical Education Gymnasium
Competition Format:
-- Game: Four 10-minute periods.
-- Regular season: 4-round robin format (Each team plays its opponents four times); each team plays a total of 24 games. Games will be scheduled only on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
-- Playoffs: Top four teams in the regular season advance to the playoffs. No.1 seed meets No.4 seed and No.2 meets No.3 in the best-of-three semi-final series. Winners meet in a best-of-five Finals which starts on April 21st, 2004.
-- All-Star Game: January 30th.

Main Sponsor/Marketing Group: NIKE Taiwan/ESPN Taiwan

Sunday, August 03, 2003

Taiwan basketball notes

Super League
With the help from the NSC(National Sports Council), CTBA will launch the new-formatted A-League which is called the “Super League” in November. The new league is still semi-pro, but in some way is trying to push Taiwanese basketball to the professional level.

A total of 7 teams are expected to play, including Yulon Dinos, Jutai Technology, Dacin Constructions, BCC Mars, Bank of Taiwan, Taiwan Beer and SINA Lions.

A couple of principles are set after the meetings last week. First of all, from now on teams will not pay high school players, which is seen by observers as the biggest reform in Taiwanese basketball in the last ten years. High school players will have to go thru the annual DRAFT to sign with any team. Currently, most A-League players are still college students.

Also, in the first year the league will not set the team salary cap and will not allow imports, in order to cut down budgets.

The inaugural season will open in November and schedule games only on weekends. Details of the new season remained to be discussed.

ESPN Taiwan and NIKE joined forces and won the bidding war(over Videoland TV/ERA TV) of the league’s marketing/broadcasting rights for the first three years.

NT-WUG Squad warmups
Taiwan Senior NT beat the WUG squad, 83-75, last week in the second warmup game. Taiwan NT also won the first game with a 20-point margin.

Taiwan NT will open its last stage of preparation on August 6th with a tour to Philippines, where they will meet a couple of NBL teams in a series of exhibition games.

“Anklebreaker” visits Taiwan
Occidental College(NCAA Div-III) guard Song Cun, a second generation Chinese-American, is now touring Taiwan for a NIKE streetball campaign “Battleground Asia” along with a French group “SlamNation”.

Standing only 5-6, Cun is known for his ill crossover dribble and is nicknamed “Anklebreaker”. Cun is a all-conference guard and led Occidental to NCAA Div-III elite eight this year. He will try to pursuit a professional career in Asia.