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67th Junior National Basketball Championship: The Final Hustle
Puducherry, 8th May, 2016: After the bitter disappointment of a runners up finish last year, Karnataka girls emerged the deserving champions in the Arise Steel 67th Junior National Basketball Championship organised by the Puducherry Basketball Association (PBA), under the aegis of the Basketball Federation of India (BFI), at the Rajiv Gandhi Indoor Stadium in the city, here on the 8th of May.
Karnataka girls triumph
In the finals, both the teams came to the occasion prepared and were neck and neck at the end of the first quarter. Both were playing zone defense and their respective shooters maximized on the opportunities, scoring from behind the arc. Tamil Nadu led, 16-14, after the first ten minutes. The intensity changed in the second quarter as Karnataka shifted to man-to-man defense and were able to stop the three pointers of Tamil Nadu. In the third quarter, Karnataka took a huge lead as their defensive pressure forced the Tamil Nadu players into many turnovers. The turnover led to easy transition baskets, many of which were converted by their senior international star Bhandavya. In the fourth quarter, Karnataka maintained its double digit lead despite Tamil Nadu switching to a full court press in desperation.
Karnataka girls: Winners of the 67th Junior National Basketball Championship
Tamil Nadu boys repeat as Champs
After mediocre league rounds where they finished 2-2, Tamil Nadu boys have stepped up in the business end of the Championship, exacting revenge, first against Haryana in the quarterfinals, and now against Kerala in the finals. The Kerala side led by M D Shiras has been a revelation this year, but against a resurgent Tamil Nadu outfit playing not far from home, they found the going tough in the gold medal match.
In the first quarter, both the teams played a zone defense and Kerala came prepared, as they were able to limit TN’s youth India captain Baladaneshwar’s offensive explosiveness. But Hari Ram, the Tamil Nadu Captain was aggressive both on the offensive and defensive boards, as he brought his ‘A’ game today with marvellous putbacks and mid-range jump shots. Taking a decent lead in the third quarter, Tamil Nadu was careful with the ball as the Kerala team shifted to a full court pressure defence. With the time running out Kerala did all they could but the two Tamil Nadu guards Bala and Kali dribbled through their defence with ease as they created chances from themselves and their teammates. Kerala was still in the hunt trailing by 6 points in the last minute of the fourth quarter, but Hari Ram once again stepped up to finish the game off in style.
Tamil Nadu boys: Winners of the 67th Junior National Basketball Championship
Prize Distribution Ceremony at the 67th Junior National Basketball Championship
BFI President Shri K Govindaraj was the chief guest for the prize distribution ceremony. Mr Aadhav Arjuna, Chairman of the Organising Committee & Managing Director of Arise Industries & Agency Pvt. Ltd. was the guest of honour. Dr T Sundararajan, the principal of Pondicherry Engineering College presided over the ceremony, with Mr V Rajasekar, Managing Director, Raman Roadways felicitating the guests. Other dignitaries overseeing the ceremony included Rev Fr MS John Bosco, President-PBA and Dr V Ragothaman, Honorary Secretary-PBA.
1) Tamil Nadu
2) Tamil Nadu
Day 8 Results
Tamil Nadu 88 (Hari Ram 29, Bala 19) bt Kerala 77 (Shiras 23, Prem 22) [23-16, 20-19, 18-17, 27-25]
Karnataka 64 (Bhandavya 29, Priyanka 10) bt Tamil Nadu 44 (Srishti 8) [14-16, 19-9, 19-3, 12-16]
3rd and 4th Place
Delhi 77 (Vishal 17, Hasraj 14) bt Haryana 72 (Sonu Kumar 14, Deepak 11) [11-12, 20-17, 20-20, 26-23]
Maharashtra 60 (Shruti 27, Neha 15) bt Chhattisgarh 58 (Vaniana 15, Gulabsha 14) [10-13, 16-15, 11-9, 23-21]
5th and 6th Place
Punjab 65 (Sahil 20) bt Chandigarh 46 (Jatin 15, Abishek 15) [21-14, 15-6, 20-12, 9-14]
Kerala 72 (Anusha 20, Nimmi George 18) bt Haryana 62 (Surya 33, Bharti 9) [13-15, 19-15, 18-16, 22-15]
7th and 8th Place
Maharashtra 63 (Sayyad 18, Aaron 10) bt Rajasthan 61 (Abbas 32) [13-27, 11-7, 18-16, 21-11]
Punjab 76 (Komalpreet 26, Aakarshan 18) bt Delhi 63 (Sushantika 23, Ragnee 14) [18-11, 23-14, 14-16, 21-22]