September 21, 2010

U18 team for FIBA Asia Championship for Men in Yemen

The Indian U18 men’s squad, set to represent the country in the 21st FIBA Asia U18 Championship for Men in Sana’a (Yemen), from September 22 – October 1, was recently finalised. The contingent of 12 players, accompanied by two coaches, a physiotherapist, and two FIBA referees, left for Yemen on Sunday, September 19th.

The Young Cagers will play their first game against Japan on September 22nd.

The full U18 squad is:

Rakesh Kumar Yadav
Shadab Khan
Bobby Singh
Rajan Sharma
Arjun Singh
Amjyot Singh
Sunny Raut
Jaskaran Singh Gill
Anant Singh
Dishant Vipul Shah
Ajay Pratap Singh
Berdinent Carmel Joseph Charles Patrick

Head Coach: Ram Kumar Gahlawat
Coach: Senthilselvan Ventriselvan
Physiotherapist: Nilesh Bharat Shah
FIBA Referee: Rajan Vellingirinathan
FIBA Referee: Sharad Vasant Bansode

The Basketball Federation of India (BFI) has also named two stand-by players for the competition: Kirti Goswami and Sukhjeet.

India is amongst the 16 teams in this tournament, qualifying in Group D along with Japan, Iraq, and hosts Yemen. The squad will try to improve its performance in this tournament from the last U18 FIBA Asia Championships which were held in Tehran (Iran) in 2008 – India only managed finish 13th in that competition.

The schedule for India’s first round games is (With Local time at Sana’a):

Sep 22 – 12:00: India vs. Japan
Sep 23 – 19:00: India vs. Yemen
Sep 24 – 09:00: Iraq vs. India

The top three teams from each group will move on to the second round stage from September 25-29th, before the Quarter and Semi-Finals. The finals of the tournament will be held on Friday, October 1st.

India showed a strong performance to qualify for this competition when the Middle Asia Zone Qualifying Round games were played in Bangalore from August 12-14th, as they went on to beat rivals Nepal, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka by an average of 39 points in each game.

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