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Akaho crowned TISSOT MVP to lead FIBA Women's Asia Cup All-Star Five
AMMAN (Jordan) - There was a double celebration for Japan forward Himawari Akaho after she landed TISSOT MVP honors at the FIBA Women's Asia Cup 2021 in recognition for her leadership and defense in taking her nation to another title.
Japan went five in a row after taking down China 78-73 in an amazing game that will be remembered for many years by those who witnessed it. The forward might not have had the most spectacular numbers during the competition, but her work ethic and calm head in the biggest moments were a difference-maker.
Her key interventions included a game-winning last second block in the Semi-Final with Australia. Akaho averaged 10.6 points. 5 rebounds and 2.2 steals per game.
She was joined in the All-Star Five by her teammate Saori Miyazaki who erupted in the title game with an incredible 26 points and 11 assists. That contributed to a tournament average of 9.6 dimes per game, handing her the number one spot in the category.
Meanwhile despite the disappointment of missing out on gold, China did have two players in the line-up. Yueru Li headed to Amman tipped for a place and she delivered with 15.6 points, 7.4 rebounds and 1.4 blocks per outing. Sijing Huang also made it with an outstanding efficiency throughout, averaging 13.2 points, 5.4 boards and 3.2 assists per game.
Finally, Sami Whitcomb led Australia by example from start to finish and took the last All-Star Five spot. She guided the Opals to another bronze medal and lit it up throughout with 17.5 points, 7.5 assists and 7.2 rebounds per game.