ONGC got off to a blistering start in the finals, before Railway found its rhythm towards the end of the first quarter to trail 18-21. Railway Centre Somveer got into early foul trouble in his attempts to contain rival centre Amritpal Singh, and had to sit out the second quarter. That was just the ammunition that Amritpal needed to continue to cause havoc in the paint. Playing him perfect foil was veteran guard Riyazuddin, who simply couldn't miss from beyond the three point line, hitting... [read more]
ONGC got off to a blistering start in the finals, before Railway found its rhythm towards the end of the first quarter to trail 18-21. Railway Centre Somveer got into early foul trouble in his attempts to contain rival centre Amritpal Singh, and had to sit out the second quarter. That was just the ammunition that Amritpal needed to continue to cause havoc in the paint. Playing him perfect foil was veteran guard Riyazuddin, who simply couldn't miss from beyond the three point line, hitting 7 cold blooded tres. Riyazuddin would end the game with 35 points and the man of the match award.
Final's Man of the Match ONGC's Riyazuddin. Final's Man of the Match ONGC's Riyazuddin. Giving the two ONGC players strong support was the unflappable Vishesh who had 24 points in the game, not to mention his strong leadership at the defensive end of the floor.
Indian Railway trailed 35-55 at the end of the second quarter. ONGC had the luxury of using their bench while cruising to the finish line. Railway's Gagandeep battled hard against the taller Amritpal but was blocked multiple times, while Gagandeep's guard mate Himanshu top scored with 16 points.
Shri Devender Kalyan, Commissioner-Income Tax (Gurugram) was the chief guest of the occasion. Shri Krishan Hooda, Contractor (Haryana Urban Developmental Authority) was the guest of honour. Also present as guests were Shri Pardeep Kumar, Additional Deputy Commissioner (Rohtak) and Prof Dalbir Singh Kharab, Secretary of Haryana State Basketball Association.
Two past players hailing from Haryana, Arjuna Awardee Om Prakash Sr and Shri Ram Kumar (Dhyan Chand awardee) graced the occasion and were presented bouquets by the chief guest and guest of honour.
Basketball Club of Haryana's Organising Secretary Shri Sudhir Hooda and Secretary Adv. Navdeep conducted the felicitations and players/officials' introductions.
ONGC's international centre Amritpal Singh was named the tournament's most valuable player (MVP), and was awarded a cash prize of INR 5100/- and a full Rido basketball set.
The winning team, ONGC Dehradun received INR 1,00,000/- and a trophy while runners up Indian Railway got INR 50,000/-. Additionally, every man of the match throughout the tournament received INR 2100/- and trophies.
In the first match today, Group A's bottom two teams took on each other in search of their first win. Having been knocked out of contention of the main competition, these teams were playing for pride. Hosts Basketball Club of Haryana especially were hoping to post a win on their homecourt. In the first quarter, BCH led 26-24 before the momentum started shifting Punjab's way. A young side, Punjab passed the ball beautifully to get multiple people on the scoreboard. After matching Haryana i... [read more]
In the first match today, Group A's bottom two teams took on each other in search of their first win. Having been knocked out of contention of the main competition, these teams were playing for pride. Hosts Basketball Club of Haryana especially were hoping to post a win on their homecourt. In the first quarter, BCH led 26-24 before the momentum started shifting Punjab's way. A young side, Punjab passed the ball beautifully to get multiple people on the scoreboard. After matching Haryana in the second quarter, by the end of the third quarter Punjab was leading 60-54.
Now under pressure, BCH's trio of Yudhvir, Bhupender and Vipin stepped up in the final 10 minutes. The well-built Bhupender was especially aggressive and for BCH within 3 points of Punjab halfway through the fourth quarter. However, Punjab immediately went on a run to lead 68-61, and managed to hold on to a two possession lead right till the final buzzer.
As many as five Punjab players had scored in double digits led by Akshay Deep's 24 points. Panipat (Haryana) born Sahil, who trains in the Ludhiana Basketball Academy and represents Punjab, was named man of the match. This was the latest achievement for the teenager who is currently on the junior Indian team which just returned from its 8th place finish at the FIBA Asia U18 Championship for Men.
Punjab (Akshay Deep 24, Gurwinder S 16, Sahil 15) bt Basketball Club of Haryana (BCH) (Yudhvir 19, Bhupender 17, Vipin 12) 79-75 [24-26, 16-16, 20-12, 19-21]
This was the second straight game featuring two teams yet to win in the competition. But unlike Punjab and BCH, which featured many youngsters, these were two seasoned teams which had competed well in their two losses so far.
With ONGC Dehradun and Income Tax Chennai being the other teams in the group, It could be argued that Group A is the group of death in this tournament.
Haryana were aching to register their first win in the state's first ever All India Championship, and that desperation showed right from the get go. Haryana led from the start right to the finish, with their lead ballooning with each passing minute. They led 25-22 at the end of the first quarter and 47-35 at halftime, before Air Force mounted a semblance of a comeback in the third. But that turned out to be the lull before the final storm for Haryana, which scored a whopping 33 points in the fourth. Belying expectations, it wasn't international guard Vinay Kaushik who led the charge for Haryana. In fact he was the side's fourth highest scorer, as diminutive point guard Narender was in scorching touch from beyond the arc. Narender would hit 5 threes in route to deservedly being named the man of the match, for arguably his best ever scoring performance at the senior level.
Haryana (Narender 28, Ravinder 16, Pradeep 16, Vinod 14, Vinay 13) bt Indian Air Force (Ashutosh Rai 23, Rohit 15, Joginder 12, Nikhil 10) 102-78 [25-22, 22-13, 22-27, 33-16]
In the final Group A league match, ONGC Dehradun outlasted the short staffed Income Tax, Chennai 73-50 to cruise into the semifinals as the top seeded team from Group A. Income Tax, Chennai too has progressed to the semifinals as the second group team. Featuring only 7 players in their squad, Income Tax, Chennai were dealt with a further blow as starting point guard, and current India player, Akilan Pari had to sit out the match due to an ankle sprain.
In his absence, fellow international Rikin Pethani shouldered the load on both ends of the floor. However, even for the graceful Rikin, the task of handling rival centres Amritpal Singh and Murali Krishna was too much to bear. Amritpal returned to the side after missing the previous few games, and immediately energised himself and the crowd with a transition dunk in the second half. Income Tax, which led at the end of the first quarter 21-19, was soon swept by the versatility of the ONGC attack. ONGC features three current internationals Vishesh Bhriguvanshi, Yadwinder Singh and Amritpal, and all three imposed their will at various stages of the match.
Backup guard Hakkem had a few impressive plays for Income Tax, but the Dehradun side were largely untroubled, winning by a 23 point margin.
In the final league match of the tournament, Indian Railway beat Army to go atop Group B. Indian Railway was lulled into complacency as it held a 11 point lead going into the second quarter. As a result, eventual man of the match Jai Bir took advantage, turning out into the X-Factor of the game. The guard had 5 three pointers, started from the end of the first quarter and stretching upto the end of the third quarter, to help Army outscore Railway 44-40. Railway led 66-59 going into the final 10 minutes, and Jai Bir getting fouled out at the start of the period was a godsend for the side that went on a 32-21 tear to end the game with a big 98-80 victory. for Railway, centre Somveer had a big scoring night of 32 points, aided by Gagan (16 pts) & Ajay Pratap (15 pts).
Indian Railway (Somveer 32, Gagan 16, Ajay Pratap 15, Birender 14) bt Indian Army (Ramesh 17, Jai Bir 15, Gopal Ram 14, Vishal 14) 98-80 [26-15, 19-19, 21-25, 32-21]
The 1st All India Basketball Tournament for Men, Rohtak tipped off yesterday at the Rajiv Gandhi Sports Complex in Sector 6. The tournament is being organised by the Basketball Club of Haryana (BCH) under the aegis of the Haryana State Basketball Association and the Basketball Federation of India. In a decisive set of matches, Group B teams Indian Railway and Indian Army, and Group A's ONGC, Dehradun and Income Tax, Chennai are through to the semifinals, with perfect 2-0 records. Even t... [read more]
The 1st All India Basketball Tournament for Men, Rohtak tipped off yesterday at the Rajiv Gandhi Sports Complex in Sector 6. The tournament is being organised by the Basketball Club of Haryana (BCH) under the aegis of the Haryana State Basketball Association and the Basketball Federation of India.
In a decisive set of matches, Group B teams Indian Railway and Indian Army, and Group A's ONGC, Dehradun and Income Tax, Chennai are through to the semifinals, with perfect 2-0 records.
Even though all 4 semifinalists have been decided, tomorrow's final round of league matches will still be crucial in terms of decided the toppers of both groups and consequently the semifinal matchups for day after tomorrow.
Mr Pradeep Kumar, Additional Deputy Commissioner (Rohtak) was the first guest for the day. Later on Shri Ved Parkash Sheoran, Principal of Government College, Rohtak and Master Rampal Arya, Mahamantri of Arya Pratinidhi Sabha, Haryana were greeted warmly by participating teams. Finally Professor Pardeep Rana from Maharshi Dayanand University, Rohtak was present for the final match of the day.
Day 2 action began with Punjab taking on Indian Army. After a strongly contested first three quarters, Indian Army broke away in the last 10 minutes to go 2-0, while Punjab is now 0-2 and certain to not progress to the knockout stages, with one league match still remaining. Vishal of Indian Army was named man of the match.
Overcoming some loud home support to Haryana, ONGC Dehradun kept their composure and became the first team to progress to the semifinals from Group A. Haryana's international guard Vinay Kaushik fought valiantly, including an impossible three pointer at the halftime buzzer. But ONGC still held a 40-34 lead going into the second half. Current India international Vishesh Bhriguvanshi showed his class yet again with a mammoth 33 points. Former international Riyazuddin had a man of the match worthy 18 points, while another current international Yadwinder Singh was effective on both ends of the floor.
Haryana competed extremely hard yesterday against Income Tax, Chennai and today against ONGC, and can be considered unlucky to still remain winless. With back to back losses, Haryana is now out of contention of making the semifinals, but will be looking to end on a positive note against Indian Air Force tomorrow.
Playing late in the evening, Income Tax Chennai won a very crucial Group A game against Indian Air Force to qualify to the semifinals. Coming into this match, Air Force was smarting from an opening loss against ONGC, while Income Tax had beaten home team Haryana.
This match was a fascinating contest between two very different teams. The Air Force came with a full contingent 12 players, a head coach and assistant coach, while Income Tax, Chennai is fielding just 7 players with no coaching staff.
But as it turned out this match wasn't about bench strength or off court strategists, as Income Tax prevailed 67-62. Air Force coach Jora Singh was heard early getting agitated at a few calls not going his team's way. The calm and collected Chennai side went about their business without a fuss, raking up a 17-10 lead at halftime. Air Force retaliated in the second quarter, and again in the fourth, mainly through Haryana guard Joginder and forward Ashutosh. But they were countered by current internationals Rikin Pethani and Akilan Pari. Centre Rikin proved especially unstoppable for the second straight match, scoring a high 27 points to prove himself an early tournament most valuable player (MVP) contender. In the end, despite a late rally by Air Force, Chennai prevailed 67-62.
Rightly so, Rikin Pethani was named player of the match.
With Chennai's win, they have joined ONGC (both 2-0) in the knockout stage, while Indian Air Force and Haryana (both 0-2) have been knocked out.
Income Tax, Chennai (Joginder Singh 16, Ashutosh Rai 15) bt Indian Air Force (Rikin Pethani 27, Akilan Pari 13) 67-62 [17-10, 10-14, 24-16, 16-22]
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