Sports / Basketball

China rally back to edge South Korea 76-73

(Xinhua) Updated: 2015-09-25 09:48

China rally back to edge South Korea 76-73

Yi Jianlian of China shoots against South Korea in a group match during the 2015 FIBA Asia Champions for Men in Changsha city, Central China's Hubei province, September 24, 2015. [Photo/IC]

CHANGSHA, China - Once down by 20 points, team China found a way out and edged another Asian basketball powerhouse South Korea in Group C game at FIBA Asian Championships on Thursday.

It was the second victory for China, who are trying to win their first Asian Champion in four years.

19-year-old center Zhou Qi had a team-high 21 points for China, and his 13 points in the fourth quarter made an important role in China's surpass.

Former NBA player Yi Jianlian had 20 points and 11 rebounds for the host team. Captain Zhou Peng added 14 points, including two three pointers.

China out-rebounded South Korea 44-33, which played as a main reason for their victory.

"I think it's a mental challenge to us," said Chinese head coach Gong Luming. "We have many young players in the team, and the team is progressing."

"However, we can't go further if we don't pass the phycological test, like today's game. I think the victory was a big step forward for us."

China didn't start the game well. The Asian basketball giant had the first basket of the game, and got a 4-3 lead, but South Korea showed their efficiency in the first quarter, making 10 out of their 13 attempts to finish the first quarter 27-14. Two veterans Yang Donggeun and Cho Sungmin combined 14 points in the period and China only had 14, seven of which came from Yi Jianlian.

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