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Basketball squad leads Asia qualifying group

By Aline Bannayan - Feb 28,2024 - Last updated at Feb 28,2024

AMMAN — Jordan took top spot as window 1 of Group Dqualifiers for the 31st-FIBA-Asia Cup 2025 ended with the Kingdom scoring two wins.

Jordan tipped off the qualifying journey with a 73-46 win over Palestine before they upset their hosts Saudi Arabia 79-64 in Monday’s match. In other results, Iraq managed a 75-72 win over Palestine as  Saudi Arabia beat Iraq 64-58.

It took a concerted effort of defence with personal fouls mounting for Jordan to beat Saudi Arabia. The result could have gone either way.

Halftime was 39-38, but the third quarter proved to be the tipping point as Jordan gradually took control of the pace as  Freddie Ibrahim carried the team scoring 24 points, including 3 consecutive three pointers in addition to free throws to give Jordan the lead.

Naturalised pro Rondae Hollis-Jefferson had 19 points and Ahmad Duweiri 17.

Most observers concur it was not Jordan’s impressive teamwork nor cohesion that allowed them to score expected wins in both matches.

The match against Saudi Arabia saw the team relying on  individual efforts of key players, with fouling out being a major concern with no bench support.

The team’s upcoming matches will be in November against Iraq and Palestine, however, most point out that the team needs to gradually build a stronger bench and not just rely on pros as a solution to create a competitive lineup and future plan for the team.

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