’26 Attempted 2-Pointers’ Suns fall to Hyun-Jung Lee’s teammates after extreme game plan

The Japanese power analyst doesn’t sound like he’s bluffing when he says he wants to win. Even the extreme game plan was pre-planned for Japan.

The Japanese stuck to their game plan until the end, falling 13-20 to favorites Australia in Group C of the FIBA 3×3 Asia Cup 2024 Men’s Main Draw at the OCBC Square Special Court in Singapore on Tuesday. Despite the loss, it was a strong performance from Japan 3×3.

Having selected 24 players for the tournament and sent Ryoma Saito, Thomas Kennedy, Ryuto Yasuoka, and Tomoya Ochiai to Singapore for intense training ahead of the tournament, 바카라사이트 Japan will face Australia and the Philippines for a spot in the quarterfinals.

Representing Japan are Tomoya Ochiai and Ryuto Yasuoka, who competed for Japan in the 3×3 at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. American naturalized player Thomas Kennedy has been playing in the Japanese B League since 2011 and represented Japan at the 2023 3×3 World Cup.

Japan came into the tournament with the best squad they could muster, but found their opponents too strong from the first match. The 0-0 favorites, Australia, who won back-to-back 3×3 Asia Cups from 2018 to 2022 and finished as runners-up last year, were their first opponents.

Australia’s Todd Blanchfield and William Hickey, along with Lee Hyun-joong, play for the NBL’s Illiwarra Hawks and have been dominating the 3×3 Asia Cup court since the tournament’s qualifying draw with their height and skill.

Australia was expected to dominate, but when the lid was lifted, Japan was much better prepared than expected.

While they couldn’t overcome the height of 6-foot-10 Joshua Davey and 6-foot-10 James O’Donnell, they were able to keep the Aussies on their toes until late in the game as Ryuto Yasuoka and Thomas Kennedy consistently made bold shots from the perimeter. Ryuuto Yasuoka and Thomas Kennedy combined to shoot 22 two-pointers against Australia, making five of them. The duo accounted for 10 of Japan’s 13 total points against Australia from beyond the arc. Unfortunately for Japan, none of the four two-pointers attempted by standout Tomoya Ochiai found the rim.

Japan’s game plan, which was extreme, was a good example of how shorter Asian players need to play against a powerhouse like Australia, who have virtually European players. The Japanese, whose tallest player was Thomas Kennedy at 201 centimeters, gave up eight offensive rebounds and were unable to overcome their height limitations, but their unwavering game plan to rattle the Aussies from the perimeter was impressive.

Despite the loss, Japan’s momentum is unlikely to stop here.

“Our goal in this tournament is to win,” said Hiroto Sato, a power analyst for the Japanese national team, when asked by a reporter before the match against Australia. “There is a high probability that we will lose the first match,” said Hiroto Sato, who said that the team fully expected to meet Australia in the qualifying draw. But who knows what will happen the second time we meet them in the tournament,” said Hiroto Sato.

“There are tons of videos of Australian players on the internet. But it’s old, and we in Japan think it’s better to take video footage of the game on the field and hand over the analysis to the players immediately. Australia lost to Mongolia in the 3×3 Asia Cup final last year. There’s no reason why we can’t be the ones to pull off the upset this year,” he said, emphasizing that he wasn’t kidding when he said he was aiming for the title.

Japan, who have been training intensely for months for this tournament, even sending power analysts to Singapore, will play their final match of the preliminary round against the Philippines at 9:10 p.m. (KST) today to advance to the quarterfinals.

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