WUHAN, China (26th FIBA Asia Championship): The atmosphere was electric, the support cacophonic, the occasion momentous, nerves scattered all over and most importantly the performance irresistible. Set against that background China’s 70-69 win – albeit nervy and hard-fought – against underdogs Jordan was not only overwhelmingly logical, but also reflective of the way the Dragon had raised its head again in FIBA Asia Championship.
Yes. China are back on top of the pecking order in FIBA Asia scheme of things – the team having suffered an embarrassing defeat in the gold medal two years ago at Tianjin and a second string finishing 10th two years earlier – winning a record 16th gold medal.
The win – a culmination of a 9-0 spree in the competition – also meant that the country of more than a billion people can start its planning for the London Olympics without any further qualification.
Jordan, on the other hand walked out of the Wuhan Sports Center with their heads held high, and their pride more than enhanced, having entered the gold medal game for the first in history, and against all expectations at that.
To their credit, Jordan did extremely well beyond expectations to keep the contest even till the final buzzer.