Doha, Qatar, September 17, 2023 - India's U16 basketball squad found themselves outmatched and outplayed by the defending champions, Australia, as the FIBA U16 Asian Championship tipped off at the Al-Gharafa Indoor Stadium in Doha, Qatar.
Australia's Stellar Performance
The Australian team was firing on all cylinders, with each player contributing to the team's impressive performance. Australia's bench also made a substantial impact, with Indy Cotton leading the way with 16 points in just over 17 minutes of play. Cotton's ability to score from beyond the arc (3/4 from 3-point range) was a significant factor in the team's success.
In contrast, the Indian team faced an uphill battle throughout the game. India's substitute players, led by Jins Kalayil Joby with 10 points, tried to provide a spark, but the Australian defense proved to be a formidable obstacle.
In all key statistical categories, whether rebounding, points in the paint, fast break points or second chance points, India was outmatched by Australia.
The comprehensive defeat serves as a reality check for India's U16 team, highlighting the challenges they will face in this competitive tournament. It remains to be seen how they will regroup and adapt in their upcoming group stage matches.
India (Jins Kalayil Joby 10 pts, Lokesh Kumar Sharma 9 pts, Ankush 8 pts) lose to Australia (Indy Cotton 16 pts, Henry Sewell 14 pts, Nash Walker 13 pts) 50-114 [14-33, 10-36, 10-22, 16-23].