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LIB - Sarkis, Fadi set sights on Lebanon retaining the title

BEIRUT, Lebanon (4th FIBA Asia Cup): At this time about a year ago, Ghassan Sarkis and Fadi El Khatib – the two long serving protagonists of Lebanese basketball sat together and plotted the way forward for Champville’s attempt at winning the prestigious FLBB Division A League title. Having achieved that, the two are together once again only this time the stakes are much higher.

El Khatib and Sarkis will come together again, for the first time in a FIBA Asia event in more than a decade, this time for the Cedars National Team at the 4th FIBA Asia Cup starting in Tokyo (Japan) coming Friday. Technically, Lebanon are the defending champions for the event having won the title in front of a home crowd at Beirut two years ago – in the 3rd FIBA Asia Stankovic Cup – when the event was named thus.

“We are not going only to compete, we are going to win the gold,” El Khatib said.

“I have always said that Lebanon can still compete with the best teams in Asia. It’s only a matter of a couple things, mainly the chemistry and I think the players know each other pretty well now,” he was quoted as saying in the Lebanese media.

The winners of the 4th FIBA Asia Cup will earn a direct entry to the 27th FIBA Asia Championship next year, which in turn is the qualifying event for the 2014 FIBA World Cup.

“Since the beginning, I have said that our plan is to qualify to the 2014 World Championship. Nothing changed. What we did since 2011 is to pump new blood into the team, and obviously, we can see now a couple of players who are capable of leading the team such as (Rodrigue) Akl and (Elie) Stephan,” Sarkis told Lebanon’s popular English daily The Daily Star.

“It is true that the progress was a bit slow, a normal result compared to the obstacles we had to overcome lately, but I can see that our project will start to pay off very soon,” he added.

Lebanon are drawn with reigning FIBA Asia Championship winners China, SEABA champions Philippines, East Asia’s Macau and Central Asia’s Uzbekistan in Group A of the Prelim Round competition at the 4th FIBA Asia Cup.

Lebanon open their campaign with a game against Macau tipping off the proceedings for the event itself on Sept 14. Click here for complete schedule of 4th FIBA Asia Cup.


   All times Tokyo local (GMT +0900 Hrs)
0900 7/8 PLCUzbekistan-Lebanonhttp://www.fibalivestats.com/matches/4142/06/09/20/48ydVaD0Ix7Ys/
1130 5/6 PLCCh. Taipei-Chinahttp://www.fibalivestats.com/matches/4142/06/09/21/20oHJwEqjmhpI/
1400 3/4 PLCPhilippines-Qatarhttp://www.fibalivestats.com/matches/4142/06/09/22/42zZmb9lTZ5E/
1630 FinalI.R.Iran-Japanhttp://www.fibalivestats.com/matches/4142/06/09/23/98jgPgXbg8XPI/
Lebanon (LIB)3171.4615
Philippines (PHI)3171.4125
China (CHN)3171.4120
Uzbekistan (UZB)1350.6736
Macau (MAC)0440.5037
Iran, I.R (IRI)4081.1314
Japan (JPN)3171.0966
Chinese Taipei (TPE)2261.0217
Qatar (QAT)1351.0169
India (IND)0440.7946
FIBA Asia President's Message
FIBA Asia Secretary General's Message
  Team Rank Points
  China 10 219.7
   Iran 20 83.1
  Lebanon 23 47.4
  Jordan 28 33.8
  Korea 31 26.1
      Full Rankings



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