Top Performers in second half of Window 3: Haddadi, Arledge, Sun, White, Chism
BEIRUT (Lebanon) - Living legend Hamed Haddadi continued to defy his age and was the best overall performer in the second half of Window 3 in the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 Asian Qualifiers.
Make sure to vote for your favorite player!
Haddadi is a highly experienced player and has been putting up double-doubles for a long time, which is exactly what he did against Syria. The 2.18M (7'2") center scored 14 points, grabbed 15 rebounds, handed out 4 assists, had 1 steal, and blocked 1 shot for Team Melli, which finished with 4 wins and 2 losses. Haddadi had a 24 EFF, and Iran placed second in Group D behind idle Kazakhstan. They advanced to Group F, where they will play Australia, China, and Japan.
Over in Group C, Lebanon got a big lift from 2.06M (6'9") Jonathan Arledge. The 30-year-old forward had a subpar debut against Jordan a few nights ago, but he bounced back with 19 points, 8 rebounds, 4 steals, and 2 triples as the Cedars closed Window 3 with a win over Saudi Arabia, 90-60. He recorded a 23 EFF rating. Lebanon are in good shape to do well in the Second Round, but they will need Arledge to continue putting up big numbers if they want to successfully qualify for the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023.
China, meanwhile, ended their first round with a blowout win over Chines Taipei, 97-56, and it was mainly thanks to the efforts of Sun Minghui. The 26-year-old combo guard registered a 22 EFF rating in their big win. He put up an all-around line of 13 points, 7 assists, 6 rebounds, 2 steals, and 1 block. He shot 5-of-6 from the field, too. Sun is also the only guard on this list of top performers for the second half of Window 3.
The Boomers continued their dominance in the second half of Window 3, repeating over China, 71-48. Australia consequently booked their sixth straight win of the Asian Qualifiers, entering the second round with an immaculate 6-0 record. Hotshot shooter Jack White was their best player against China, sinking 3 triples en route to 16 points. He also grabbed 14 boards in the win, finishing with a 21 EFF rating.
Bahrain pulled off the biggest upset of Window 3, inflicting Kazakhstan's first defeat, 62-51. And that happened on the road to boot! Dwayne Chism followed up his brilliant outing against Syria by recording his own double-double against the Kazakhs. The 35-year-old tallied 16 points, 12 rebounds, and 1 steal for a 19 EFF rating. That win enabled Bahrain to slingshot past Syria all the way into the second round. Chism has clearly fit in quite well with Bahrain, and if he continues this high level of play, Bahrain might have an outside chance of qualifying for next year's FIBA Basketball World Cup.