Even with the 7ft. 2 Hamed Ehadidi being benched most part of the game, Iran still proved to be too much for the Philippine National Men’s Basketball team who suffered an 81-73 loss on Thursday, September 13.
During the game at the Azady Gym in Tehran, Iran Mohammadsamad Khahbahrami scored 21 points to give the home team its sixth win in the 2019 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers and the top spot in Group F.
The highly physical game left some Filipino players bloodied but Gilas Pilipinas still kept pace with Iran throughout the first three quarters.
However on the fourth period, the Philippine team started missing its shots, and Iran made use of the opportunity to secure a 12-point lead, 81-69, with less than a minute left in the game.
Filipino – German Christian Standhardinger delivered a game-high of 30 points and 12 rebounds but it still fell short of steering the Philippine team away from its third defeat out of seven games at the Asian Qualifiers.
Meanwhile, Ehadidi, who proved to be a thorn in the side of the Philippine team during their previous encounters with Iran, only entered the court during the final seconds of the game due to a groin injury.
Gilas Pilipinas now returns back to the Philippines to host a closed-door game against Qatar at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in Cubao on Monday, September 17.