National Basketball: Services stretched by Chattisgarh (Lead)December 16th, 2011 - 9:20 pm ICT by IANS
Chennai, Dec 16 (IANS) Champions Indian Railways raced to victories in both sections, but last year’s runners-up Services were pushed to the limit by Chattisgarh in a highly entertaining men’s match on the opening day of the 62nd senior National Basketball Championships here Friday.
In the men’s section, Railways, seeking a hat-trick of titles, outplayed Uttar Pradesh 99-70, while their women’s team hammered Punjab 103-37 and did not even field their star player Geetu Anna Jose, who watched the game from the sidelines.
Services, however, were pushed into a corner by an inspired Chattisgarh who raised visions of an upset win when they went into the break leading 37-25 only to lose in the end.
On resumption, Services tightened up their game and went into overdrive to dominate the second-half 45-29. Chattisgharh, with a host of India players, could not match the speed and superior fitness of the Services players.
For the Services, Narender Kumar and K.Vipin topped with 18 points apiece while Kiran Pal Singh (21) excelled for Chattisgarh.
Meanwhile, the scheduled men’s Group A match between Delhi and Uttarkhand did not start due to confusion over the latter fielding two players, Yadwinder Singh and Vishesh Bhriguvanshi, who had shifted from the Railways.
Delhi objected saying the two players had not taken No Objection Certificate from the Railways to represent Uttarakhand. The Basketball Federation of India has sought a legal opinion pending which the match has been kept in abeyance.
The results (preliminary league):
Men (Level 1): Group A - Indian Railways 99 (Gagandeep Singh 26, Tilwar Singh 17, Prakash Vishva 14) bt Uttar Pradesh 70 (Rudra Pratap Singh 24, Veerendra Kumar 14). HT: 56-40.
Group B - Services 70 (Narender Kumar 18, K.Vipin 18, Dilip Kumar 12) bt.66 Chhattishgarh (Kiran Pal Singh 21, Bobby Singh 11) HT: 25-37.
Level 2: Group C - Himachal Pradesh 75 (Surjit Singh 27, Ashok Kumar 16, Dinesh Kumar 14) bt Chandigarh 72 (Ravi Baradwaj 20, Rajeer Singh 12). HT: 36-35.
Group E - Odisha 75 (Ashish Behera 12, Sangeeba 11) bt Bihar 37 (Mahavendra 13). HT: 33-14.
Group F - Maharashtra 84 (Raj Kaldhor 22, Akshay Bhosle 17) bt Puducherry 48 (Harikrishna 19, Navinkanth 18). HT: 40-18.
Women (Level 1): Group A - Chattisgrarh 74 (Deepa 11, Kavitha 18, Poonam 10) bt Maharashra 44 (Shirin 15, Trisha 7). Ht: 42-18. Indian Railways 103 (Kokila 22, Harjit Kaur 14, Anita 12) bt Punjab 37 (Kiranjit Kaur-13). HT: 58-20.
Level 2: Group E: Odisha 46 (Sitamani Tudor 10, SS Patnaik 8) bt Chandigarh 20 (Sudharani 10). HT: 33-14.
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