Colombo, Nov 29 (IANS) The Indian basketball team finished fifth in the third FIBA Asia Under-16 Championship for Women by defeating Kazakhstan 84-71.
Vimmy Varkey made all her four free throws count in the last 30 seconds to keep the game out of reach for Kazakhstan.
After securing a victory over Malaysia earlier in the tournament, India had to win against Kazakhstan to retain Level I position for the fourth edition scheduled for 2015. This is the second time India has finished fifth.
After leading by six points in the first quarter, Kazakhstan put up a fight as they went to tie the score at half time at 36.
The third quarter belonged to India as they scored 26 points to Kazakhstan’s 15. Four Indians scored double digits with Riya Verma with the highest (24 points).
India went on to score 34 from Point in the Paint and 11 points from Turnovers. The victory was powered by their inside play and defence, scoring 34 points in the paint and 11 more off turnovers.
Three India players finished with double-doubles in points and rebounds – Bhandava Hemmige Mahesha (23 points and 12 rebounds), Srividhya Venkataraman (20 and 11) and Mayukha Kollam Thodi (11 and 11).
Head coach T.D. Biju said: “I would like to congratulate the players. It was good to finish the tournament on a high defeating Kazakhstan. All credit goes to these players who have been working hard over two months preparing for this championship. They have done a wonderful job in realising the strategies that we had put in place for today’s game.”
Result: India (Riya Verma 24, Bhandavya Hemmige 23, Srividhya Venkataraman 20, Mayukha Kollam Thodi 11) bt Kazakhstan (Anastassiya Arzamastseva 21, Elmira Abikeyeva 13, Alexandra Kovalevskaya 13) 84-71 (20-14, 16-22, 26-15, 22-20).