JINAN, China (2nd FIBA Asia U16 Championship for Women): Malaysia carried out their plans with composure at the crunch moments in their 61-57 win against Hong Kong on Tuesday and moved very close to a top-two finish in Level II.
Now, only defeats in both their remaining games – against Singapore on Wednesday) and Sri Lanka the following day – and a whole lot of permutation-combination coming out of other results can send Malaysia out of the reckoning for the Qualification play-offs.
Sri Lanka, Singapore and Hong Kong all too have the opportunity to earn a play-off berth, but need to win their remaining games and need some favorable results in other games.
The top two teams from Level II will play off against the bottom two teams of Level I with the winners of the play-offs getting promoted to next edition’s Level I competition.
“We were aware of the importance of winning today. That’s the why girls were a little nervous in the beginning,” said Malaysia coach Choo Seck Yun about the evenly matched contest.
Malaysia took control of the scoreboard late in the first half and maintained it for the remainder of the game, but Hong Kong kept gnawing.
“We played bad when we had to play well,” bemoaned Hong Kong coach Tam Yau Tong.
“We still have a chance. We will fight back,” he said.
“It is difficult to predict the reaction of the youngsters at this level and plan properly,” reasoned out Choo Seck Yun.
Sri Lanka and Singapore, earlier in the day, kept themselves in the race.
Sri Lanka overcame a much superior height advantage of their rivals and warded off a mid-game threat to beat Uzbekistan 63-46 after Singapore had tipped off the day with a runaway 74-55 win against Macau.
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