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Asian Games 2018

Asian Games 2018: Size doesn’t matter as Qatar defeat Hong Kong men in basketball

The Qataris have only one six-footer in their ranks but still ran out 90-80 winners in group C opening game

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 14 August, 2018, 9:28pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 14 August, 2018, 10:56pm

Qatar’s basketball team can boast just one player above six-foot tall in their Asian Games line-up. Hong Kong have nine. Still, the Middle Eastern country proved too strong as they ran out 90-80 winners in their opening Asian Games group C clash in Jakarta on Tuesday.

With the Games still three days from its official opening, Hong Kong can already sense an early exit, though they will take heart from an impressive fourth quarter that came too late to undo the damage.

Lau Tsz-lai scored 12 of his team-leading 21 points in the fourth as Hong Kong outpointed their opponents 32-17 in the final 10 minutes.

But it was much too late for Hong Kong, who had managed only 16 points in each for the first three quarters, giving themselves too much to do on the stretch.

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Tsai Choi-kwan scored 12 points for Hong Kong while Szeto Wai-kit had 10. Qatar’s main scorers were evenly spread with their only six-footer, Mohamed Hassan, hitting 17 points while Khalid Abdi led the team with 19 points. Also into double figures was Mohd Mohammed (15) and Moustafa Lashin (10).

The men’s next pool C game is against Taiwan on Friday.

They also face Japan on August 22 with the top two from each of the four groups advancing to the quarter-finals.

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Hong Kong’s women are in action today when they face Japan in group B. Also in their group are Mongolia and Thailand.

Basketball is among a handful of sports, handball and football included, that is starting before the official Jakarta Palembang Asian Games 2018 opening ceremony on Saturday.