New Zealand has defeated the Philippines on the second day of the FIBA 2016 Olympic qualifying tournament in Manila. Kiwis registered the win by 89-80 and eliminated the host team from Olympic contention.
Earlier, the Philippines lost the game against France. Now, this defeat has proven that the Philippines just couldn?t find their rhythm in the game. In the game against New Zealand, they scored 41% while the guest team managed to make 48% of their field goals. The team scored 11 three pointers but that was not enough against their 14 turnovers.
Corey Webster was announced the man of the match. However, his younger brother Tai Webster stole the show with 25 points on top of 11 rebounds and 3 assists. With this performance, Tai has gained the third position among the players with the highest points per game and second among the top performers.
The New Zealand team was very confident about this FIBA 2016 Olympic qualifying tournament game. Prior to the match, the head coach of the New Zealand team, Paul Henare, expressed his excitement in an interview with Rappler.
Paul said, ?For a lot of our guys it?ll be the first time that they played in a crowd like this. And even, not just the size, I think the energy that the crowd creates, it?s fun to be a part of. But I know the guys aren?t intimidated by it. They?re excited to play in front of this crowd.?
When asked if he was surprised by the Philippines team, he said, ?No, not at all, Philippines made their run and France didn?t look rattled at all, they just stayed with what they?re doing, ran their sets. Didn?t shoot the ball very well down the stretch but came up with some huge offensive boards.?
With this victory, the Kiwis has advanced to the semifinal round along with France in Group B. FIBA 2016 Olympic qualifying tournament semi-finals will be held on Saturday, starting at 10:30 (GMT) and 13:00 PM (GMT).