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Jordan 2nd at West Asian basketball championship

By Aline Bannayan - Jun 04,2016 - Last updated at Jun 04,2016

AMMAN — Jordan beat Lebanon 83-82 to clinch second place at the West Asian Basketball Association (WABA) Championship.

Jordan advance alongside Iran and Iraq to the FIBA Asia Challenge (know earlier, between 2004 and 2010 as the FIBA Asia Stanković Cup and from 2012 to 2014 as the FIBA Asia Cup).

Jordan needed overtime to beat Lebanon after original time ended 75-75. It earlier lost to Iran 87-75, beat Iraq 84-80 and Syria 86-63.

Last year, Jordan took the runner-up spot after they beat Syria 80-69 at the WABA Championship and clinched one of three qualifying slots to the tourney in China. Lebanon took top spot and Palestine advanced for the first time ever.

Host China and 2014 FIBA Asia Cup champion Iran automatically qualified to the FIBA Asia  which qualifies the winner to represent Asia at the 2016 Summer Olympics basketball tournament.

In 2014, Jordan won the WABA title for the second time in the absence of both the Lebanese and senior Iranian teams and represented the West Asia zone at the 5th FIBA Asia Cup where China, as well defending FIBA Asia Championship titleholders Iran had automatically qualified. The Cup (previously known as Stankovich Cup) is held every two years. Qatar were champs in 2004, Jordan in 2008, Lebanon in 2010 and Iran in 2012 and 2014.

Jordan first won the West Asia title in 2002. In the 2011 qualifiers, Jordan finished second behind Iran and qualified to the 26th FIBA Asia Championship. Jordan reached the final, but lost the chance qualify to the 2012 Olympic Games losing the final 70-69 to China. Jordan then played at the FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament (OQT) for Men but lost to Puerto Rico and Greece and was eliminated. The OQT gave Asia’s second and third teams a chance to qualify to the London Games basketball event. 


Although the men’s basketball team reached the World Championship in 2010 — and was the only Jordanian team to actually reach a world championship in a team sport alongside the junior team in 1995 — official support for Jordan’s second most popular game is seen as below par by most observers, leading to a decline in the game locally and less competitive advantage on the regional scene.

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