India thrashes hapless Guam at U-18 women's Asian championship

Srishti Suren and Dharshini Thirunavukkarasu were the stand-out performers as every India player scored.

India's Gulabsha Ali (left) in action during the U-18 Basketball Women Championship against Guam in Bengaluru.   -  G P Sampath Kumar

India pummelled a hapless Guam 107-42 on the second day of the FIBA U-18 Women’s Asian Championship at the Sree Kanteerava Indoor Stadium in Bengaluru on Monday.

Guam stood no chance. Instead of 12 players, its roster had just eight and one among them, Maria Taitano, was walking around on crutches because of a knee injury. Their short stature -- an average height of 5 foot 5 inches -- meant they played catch up throughout. It won all of two second chance points in the entire match. India bagged 23.

Consequently, India's 28-9 lead by the end of the first quarter was no surprise. Guam’s point-guard Alana Salas did manage two fine three-pointers which was met with loud cheers from the sparse crowd. But they didn't hurt India one bit.

The second quarter similarly saw little resistance from Guam. Forward Srishti Suren often drove to the paint with ease and India stretched the lead to 50-22. After half-time, it was the turn of Sreekala Rani and Dharshini Thirunavukkarasu to make merry as India went on a 20-point scoring run which effectively flattened Guam.

Every Indian player scored. Six among them accounted for double-digit points, with Srishti (19 points and nine rebounds) and Dharshini (15 points and nine rebounds) the stand-out performers.

“We had no expectations,” said Guam coach Jimmy Yi. “We just came to have fun and results don’t matter. We did have a squad of 12 but four couldn’t make it here as they had to attend school. We are here just for the experience.”

Earlier, in Division A, while Australia, Korea and Japan walloped past their opponents, New Zealand, for the second day running, ran its adversary close. It kept pace with four-time defending champion China for nearly three quarters before falling away in the fourth and losing 58-67.
 

The results:

Division A

Group A: Australia 106 bt Chinese Taipei 66; Korea 84 bt Indonesia 40

Group B: China 67 bt New Zealand 58; Japan 130 bt Malaysia 31.
 

Division B

Group A: India 107 (Srishti Suren 19, Dharshini 15, Ishwarya Janardhanan 11, Sreekala Rani 10, Ann Mary Zachariah 10, Achuta Sreeramaneni 10 bt Guam 42 (Elysia Perez 12); Iran 70 bt Singapore 53;

Group B: Kazakhstan 67 bt Samoa 51; Syria 66 bt Hong Kong 47.