CHINESE-TAIPEI, IRAN HOLD SWAY
Chinese-Taipei and Iran continued their unbeaten runs Tuesday at the Mall of Asia Arena, firming up their grip on the No. 1 spot in their respective groups going into the final day of the 2013 FIBA Asia Championship preliminaries.
Veteran slotman Tseng Wen-Ting banged in 19 points as Chinese-Taipei eked out a scary 79-76 squeaker over a gritty Japan crew. Chinese-Taipei now totes a 4-0 card to lord it over Group E.
Gilas Pilipinas played another solid all-around game to frustrate erstwhile undefeated Qatar, 80-70. Both victor and vanquished now carry 3-1 records to trail streaking Chinese-Taipei.
Jordan spanked winless Hong Kong, 80-54, to keep its flickering hopes for a quarterfinals berth alive as it tied Japan at 1-3. They play a knockout game Wednesday to decide which team advances to the Final 8.
In Group F, Iran hardly worked out a sweat in a 75-56 thrashing of Bahrain. The two-time Asian champs pace the six-team group with a 4-0 slate.
Korea stayed a game behind at second as it drubbed Kazakhstan, 71-47.
The Kazakhs now find themselves tied at third with a 2-2 card alongside China, which ripped India, 79-45.
Saudi Arabia downed Thailand, 93-80, in consolation play at the Ninoy Aquino Stadium to claim 13th place. The Thais finished 14th in the field of 15. (JL)
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