|7||P. AMAGOU||Did not play|
|8||K. KONATE SORNAN*||21||2/8||25||2/3||66.7||0/5||0||0/0||0||1||3||4||0||3||3||0||1||4|
|Min||Minutes played||Tot||Total rebounds||BS||Block Shots|
|%||Shooting percentage||PF||Personal fouls||*||Starters|
ANKARA (2010 FIBA World Championship) – Turkey got off to the perfect start and never looked back as they cruised past Ivory Coast
86-47 in front of a 7,700 strong crowd at Ankara Arena.
Omer Onan, Kerem Tunceri and Ersan Ilyasova led a three-point barrage in the early going to take a commanding 14-0 lead.
Ivory Coast eventually got in the scoring column, courtesy of Mohamed Kone. Once they got that first basket, the underdogs seemed to relax and get into the game.
The hosts had a 23-11 advantage at the end of the opening quarter, but the visitors did not let that – and the partisan crowd – deter them as they found their stroke from long range at the start of the second period to get within six, 25-19.
However, the hosts applied some effective zone defense and Randoald Dessarzin – without star point guard Pape-Philippe Amagou through injury – turned the ball over time and time again, leading to easy baskets for the Turks who led 40-22 at the break.
Bogdan Tanjevic rested his starters in the third quarter but the move did not seem to throw off his charges as they maintained a comfortable lead.
The visitors looked visibly tired in the final period and the Turks took full advantage as they stretched their advantage and did so in style.
Ilyasova fed Omer Asik for an easy dunk and later Sinan Guler, who visited with FIBATV.Com after the victory, wrapped a behind the back pass to Onan for a lay-up to make it 70-41. The latter then followed that up with a three-pointer much to the crowd’s delight.
Bogdan Tanjevic (Turkey head coach): “We got off to a very good start, especially the team game we played. We did well on defense, our zone press was good. The support of our fans made us very happy and gave us power. Congratulations to all my players.”
Sinan Guler (Turkey guard): “Our fans fuelled us tonight. They gave us a lot of energy. When looking at the game in general, we were efficient in all parts, without neglecting the defense. Hedo (Hidayet Turkoglu), our top scorer, didn’t score except for free-throw but he helped us with seven assists. We have shown our game as a team very well and if we keep doing that, we can keep this good game with good results including Russia.”
Randoald Dessarzin (Ivory Coast head coach): “We didn’t fight enough and also we really missed the experience of Pape-Philippe Amagou. We lost our second guard, Issife Soumahoro, during the game and Turkey didn’t need that to put themselves in the driver’s seat. Today we didn’t play with enough fluency. Our lack of experience is what made us lose. There are positives to take. I think we played well at the end of the first quarter.”
Guy Edi (Ivory Coast guard/forward): “We were a little tense and this was an intimidating atmosphere. We started slow but got into the game after a while. Some of our players were injured so we had to change the system. But we still could have played better.”
IZMIR (FIBA World Championship) - A disciplined 24-13 final quarter and the brilliance of stalwart Fadi El Khatib have delivered an emotional 81-71 victory over Canada in Izmir, which they celebrated with their vocal fans.
For much of the game Canada looked the better team, but a stunning second half display by El Khatib (31 points, 8 rebounds) and strong support from point guard Rony Fahed (17 points) and Matt Freije (12 points, 4/7 three pointers) allowed Lebanon to record their come-from-behind victory.
For Canada, Joel Anthony was a force inside with 17 points and 6 rebounds, and received support from Andy Rautins (10 points), Denham Brown (13 points) and Levon Kendall (11 rebounds).
Crucially, Lebanon restricted Anthony and Rautins, who were dominant in the first half, to just two field goal attempts in the final quarter.
Both teams promised to play quick and in the first quarter they delivered, thrilling the large crowd in Izmir. Rautins nailed two big three pointers early, which were answered in kind by Lebanon big man Matt Freije.
Canada broke free after quarter time and consecutive Anthony baskets gave them a 30-25 lead. But Lebanon answered to draw even to set the trend for the next two quarters.
Canada started the third term with a 7-1 run, but Lebanon answered immediately through back-to-back threes from El Khatib and Fahed, who visited with FIBATV.Com after the game.
Canada then responded with two of their own to take a 52-44 lead with 4:45 to play, but El Khatib would not let his team lie down, scoring at will near the basket on his way to 16 points for the quarter to bring Lebanon within one.
The last quarter was all Lebanon, who executed in the half court and coolly converted important free throws, leaving Canada coach Leo Rautins to lament his team shooting 2/9 from the perimeter in the final term and a 26-11 foul count.
Lebanon faces France tomorrow at 6:30pm, while Canada will regroup to take on Lithuania at 4pm.
Ali Mamoud (Player) : We had prepared very well physically and psychologically. We concentrated on the game. All victories are important for us, there has been four years since our last good performance but every victory has a different importance for us.
Tab Baldwin (Coach): We are happy. People don’t expect anything from teams like Lebanon. Basketball is universal sport and there are important players all over the world. Canada was a hard team. Fadi El Khatib played very well in the World and Asia Championships, he believes in himself and he is playing very well.
We defeated France four years ago. There are so many injured players but they are one of the best teams in the world. We will play our best against France.
Leo Rautins (Coach): It was a hard game for us. There were differences between two teams. We made so many turnovers. Lebanon scored so many points from free-throws. But now we will focus on tomorrow’s game. Lithuania is a good team. We need to be more aggressive.