With their victory over Angola, Iran improved their chances of qualifying for the Olympics.
A. Geramipoor Olympic Games Tokyo 2020
Iran defeated Angola 72-61 in the classification phase of the 2019 FIBA World Cup on Friday at the Wukesong Sports Center in Beijing, thanks in large part to a dominant final quarter.
Iran’s senior guard Nikkhah Bahrami sank five 3-pointers and scored 21 points in the team’s first Group N match, helping the Persians improve their chances of snagging Asia’s lone ticket to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
For the majority of the game, neither team could pull ahead, but with 32 seconds left in the third quarter, Bahrami hit a 3-pointer to give the Iranians a 48-45 lead going into the fourth.
From there, Iran pushed forward and opened the fourth quarter with a flurry, scoring the first six points and eventually taking a 54-45 lead thanks in large part to another three-pointer from Bahrami. Hermenegildo Mbunga’s jumper with four minutes remaining brought Angola within three points, 60-57.
Bahrami, however, kept answering Iran’s questions, capping a 10-1 run with a three-point play and giving Iran a comfortable 70-58 lead with 1:17 remaining. Following that, Angola could never again pose a serious danger.
Iran, who needs a victory over Tunisia to strengthen its case as the greatest team in Asia, was boosted by the performance of Aaron Geramipoor, who scored 11 points and grabbed seven rebounds.
Meanwhile, the Philippines’ only hope of making it to Tokyo is if Iran and the rest of its Asian rivals don’t manage to win twice. At 8 o’clock tonight, the Philippine national soccer team, Gilas Pilipinas, will face Tunisia.
For Angola, Carlos Morais scored 17 points to lead three players in double digits. Valdecio Joaquim and Jose Antonio each added 10 points.
Rule setting Scores.
Bahrami (21), Geramipoor (11), Haddadi (9), Hassanzadeh (6), Jamshidi (6), Mozafarivanani (5), Yakhchali (5), Rostampour (4), Mashayekhi (2), Zangeneh (2), Talarposhti (0), and Hosseinzadeh (0) make up Iran’s 71 total.
Morais (17), Antonio (10), Joaquim (10), Paulo (7), Moore (6), Goncalves (4), Moeira (4), Conceicao (2), and Mbunga (2) account for 62% of Angola’s total point total of 62.