The 2015 FIBA Asia has began today with FIBA listing the final ranking of 16 teams in Changsha-Hunan, China. The rankings are apparently based on the teams’ respective player compositions and preparations for the biennial tournament, as reported in the official FIBA.com website.
Top eight spots have already been reserved for the projected quarterfinal teams according to the final listing of FIBA’s power ranking. The top eight teams enlisted in the power rankings are Iran, China, Philippines, Jordan, Japan, Korea, Chinese Taipei and India.
Let’s have a look at the top three teams of FIBA Asia 2015.
Ranked third in the power rankings, Philippines is stated to be one of the prime challengers in Changsha after their vital trip to Europe confronting Estonia, Iceland and Netherlands. Their experience was visible in their second round finish at the William Jones Cup 2015 as well as their title clinching feat in the MVP cup.
Former NBA stalwart, Andray Blatche, was regarded as a beast in the 2014 edition of FIBA World Cup finishing second among all players in scoring (21.2 points) and leading everyone in rebounding (13.8 boards). He will look to impact with same enthusiasm this edition too. Core strength lies with veterans Ranidel de Ocampo, Marc Pingris and Asi Taulava with Blatche patrolling the area. However, inconsistent Blatche’s fitness remains in question.
Regarded as a primary threat to Iran’s supremacy, China is ranked second in the tournament. The formidable side has four players as tall as seven feet and with coach Gong Luming, the team has been preparing for the last six months.
Yi Jianlian, the star player of the team, will look forward to pushing China on top of the Asian tournament with his added leadership skills. Strengths lie with players with average height of more than 2.10m, forming the ‘Walking Great Wall of China’. The team’s relative inconsistency and immaturity might be some of their weak links.
Defending champions Iran is ranked number one in the FIBA power list and dethroning them will be a tough ask. Mahdi Kamrani, is by far their best and oldest player. The 33-year-old star is looking at twilight of his career which shall motivate him to give everything before he bids farewell to the sport. Iran is stated as the perfect team in the league with well coached composition, experience with hardly any weakness.