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China Xinjiang Kashgar claims title at FIBA Asia Champions Cup

CCTV.com

10-17-2016 15:55 BJT

To the basketball court in Hunan Province, for the title game of the FIBA Asia Champions Cup. The Xinjiang Flying Tigers would welcome Lebanon's Al-Riyadi to the city of Chenzhou, with the hosts looking to become the first Chinese team to win the championship at this event in 18 years.

Players of China Xinjiang Kashgar react on the podium during the awarding ceremony at the 25th FIBA Asia Champions Cup in Chenzhou, central China

Players of China Xinjiang Kashgar react on the podium during the awarding ceremony at the 25th FIBA Asia Champions Cup in Chenzhou, central China's Hunan Province, Oct. 16, 2016. China Xinjiang Kashgar claimed the title by beating Al Riyadi of Lebanon in the final with 96-88. (Xinhua/Li Ga)

Revved up in red, Xinjiang take control from the beginning. Andray Blatche has his way with the visitors in the paint, as the American-Filipino center grabs his own rebound, and nails the putback off the glass.

The Flying Tigers rising star, Abdu-rexiti Abudu-sha-lamu is then set up by Darius Adams for an easy reverse.

Abudu-sha-lamu continues to attack the rim, getting the hoop and the harm here. The Xinjiang native with 10 points in the first quarter.

And he keeps it going in the second Q. With another assist from Adams, the 20-year-old nails a long jumper from the baseline. The forward would pocket 19 points in 24 minutes, making all 7 of his shot attempts.

Al-Riyadi would punch back later in the second frame. Off a steal, they find Fadi El-Khatib under the hoop, and the 37-year-old veteran nails the reverse in the face of Xinjiang center Zhou Qi.

But the hosts soon start dominating again, with Adams finding Muhtar Xirelijan for a J. The Flying Tigers would lead by as many as 22.

Zhou, who was drafted by NBA's Houston Rockets this year, adds 9 points, 9 rebounds, and 2 blocks as the hosts win 96-88. This is the first title for a Chinese team at this tournament since 1998. It's also Xinjiang's first trophy of any sort, since joining the CBA in 2002.

"I am playing better than bofore. This is a series tournament, and it's very different from the domestic league, as we have less time to prepare. And I still need to adjust before the new season," said Zhou.

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