19 February, 2024
25 February, 2025
Do you remember these memorable moments from the last Asia Cup Qualifiers?
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Do you remember these memorable moments from the last Asia Cup Qualifiers?

BEIRUT (Lebanon) - It's been a while, but the FIBA Asia Cup 2025 Qualifiers are near.

There's been a lot of basketball since the previous Asia Cup Qualifiers, but make no mistake, it was memorable.

Not convinced? Here are seven unforgettable moments from the last Asia Cup Qualifiers.

Do you remember these moments from the previous qualifiers?


Tall Blacks down Boomers in Brisbane

New Zealand 108–98 Australia
February 20, 2020

The excitement didn't take too long to build up. In the opening game of the first-ever Asia Cup Qualifiers, the defending champions played at home against their neighboring rivals, New Zealand. And they lost.

It was the first time in over 10 years that the Tall Blacks had beaten the Boomers. It turns out that was a sign of good things to come, as New Zealand eventually qualified for the Asia Cup in Jakarta and went home with a bronze medal for the first time ever.

Come-from-behind win in debut

Bahrain 68-67, India
February 21, 2020

Bahrain were one of the three teams to make it all the way from the Pre-Qualifiers to the Asia Cup itself, and their first game in the Qualifiers was one to remember.

Bahrain trailed by as much as 12 points against India and throughout nearly the entire second half—up until the last five seconds when Hesham Sarhan's three-pointer gave them the lead and, eventually, the win.

They were nearly on the wrong side of a clutch performance in the next window against Iraq, blowing a 16-point lead before outlasting their opponents in overtime.

Upset for the Ages

Syria 77-70 Iran
November 30, 2020

How was anyone supposed to see this coming? Iran had beaten Syria the first time they met in Window 1, 94-48.

Instead of witnessing the Asia Cup 2017 Finalists secure another blowout win, Syria took control in the fourth quarter - thanks to a masterful performance by Trey Kell who scored 34 points. It would be Iran's only loss in the Asia Cup Qualifiers.

The Shot, Part 1

India 81-78 Iraq
February 20, 2021

If you could take one shot from the Asia Cup 2022 Qualifiers and put on an infinite loop, it would most likely be this Vishesh Bhriguvashi buzzer-beating game-winner.

"I can tell you that maybe because of her, I made that shot."

It doesn't get much better than this…

The Shot, Part 2

Philippines 81-78 Korea
June 16, 2021

… except it did.

The Philippines and Korea have long been engaged in a rivalry that continued here in the Asia Cup Qualifiers. The clash lived up to and exceeded expectations.

Korea were in the lead by as much as 15 points in a smashing senior national team debut for Lee Hyunjung. The Philippines roared back into the game and controlled the lead in the waning seconds, off of clutch buckets by SJ Belangel and Ange Kouame.

Just as hope was looking bleak for Korea with time running out, it was Lee who knocked down a three-pointer to tie the game up. Lee did everything perfectly, whether it was rushing up the court in transition, pump-faking Kouame to get a clean look, or following through for the swish. His only fault was leaving 2.9 seconds in the game for the Philippines' last possession.

And with those precious seconds, Belangal managed to sneak in a cheeky banked three-pointer for the win.

Instant classic.

Zhou Time

China 90-84 Japan
June 19, 2021

China had already beaten Japan three days prior to this game, and that was without Zhou Qi.

After some changes and tinkering, Akatsuki Japan came out roaring in the rematch, staying ahead through the entire first half and building that lead back up again in the fourth quarter.

And then they found out how much of a difference Zhou Qi makes.

China kept Japan without a made field-goal for 5 minutes for a 13-1, powered by three Zhou Qi dunks.

These two went on to play each other again in the World Cup 2023 Qualifiers… and will face each other again in the upcoming Asia Cup Qualifiers as well (with their Window 1 clash on February 25 being one of the games to watch). These two Asian basketball powerhouses were already considered long-time rivals, and these recent clashes will only add fuel to the fire.


Chinese Taipei 85-77 Guam
August 28, 2021

From start to finish,

It wasn't until the final seconds of the very last game of the Qualifiers at the qualifying tournament for third-placed teams that all of the qualified spots for the Asia Cup 2022 were claimed.

Chinese Taipei emerged out of the drama, claiming that spot with a two-point aggregate advantage over Guam on a clutch midrange jumper by Lin Ting-Chien.

Chinese Taipei would later be on the losing end of clutch performances in the Asia Cup, losing to Jordan and Freddy Ibrahim's buzzer-beater in the Qualification to Quarter-Finals round.