Japan does not want to give up with a posture that is not up to basketball.
By: Israr Itah, journalist Republic
REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, Two weeks ago, Istora Senayan Jakarta became a “heaven” for football fans basketball Country. In one of the oldest and most historic sports arenas, the Asian basketball championship, FIBA Asia Cup 2022, will be held from July 12 to 24.
Indonesia became the host after being the last host in 1993. At that time the championship was still called the ABC Championship.
I who started my career as a journalist as a basketball reporter and quite fond of this round rubber sport, of course I welcomed it with joy. Also, I have easier access than other journalists to interact with these top Asian and Oceanian basketball players.
From them I learned a lot. From the technical play on the pitch to how they behave off the pitch. From Asian level players to NBA class. From an unknown coach to the architect who led the women’s basketball team Japan Tom Hovasse, vice-champion of the 2021 Olympic Games.
Tom is at the top of my favorites list. This person is very friendly and open to talk about everything. From the game’s technical issues to its philosophy of coaching a Japanese team that’s sparsely inhabited by many tall players.
I started to admire Tom when he helped the Japanese women’s basketball team to reach the finals of the 2021 Olympics. By the way, Japan only lost twice against the United States in the group stage and in the final. Moreover, Rui Machida touched other teams, including France and Belgium, even if they lost in average posture.
Tom is optimistic and calm in all situations. He was able to recount in detail when reporters asked him about the cause of their loss without offending or blaming the players. It’s also rare angels, and always the right words.
The team seemed very understanding about the strengths and weaknesses of the team and how to maximize them. It’s probably thanks to his track record of playing in the Japanese League when he was still active and then becoming an assistant coach in the land of the Rising Sun.
Not that Japan always wins in FIBA Asia Cup This 2022, no. Japan stopped in the quarter-finals. But they resisted for 40 minutes which will surely leave an impression on the spectators present at Istora. More importantly, according to Tom, Japan have gone from strength to strength since they last held off against Australia, who stopped them in the quarter-finals 99-85. Previously when the two teams met in Qualification FIBA World Cup 2023, Australia won a landslide 98-52 victory.
Tom teaches patience, believes in process. The most important thing from this 55-year-old coach is of course the message that to form a good basketball team at Asian level, you don’t have to bring together tall players. If you don’t, the coach needs to be able to maximize the potential that exists to fill those gaps. It displays the results directly on the field.
Tom didn’t mean to be condescending and sounded pretentious when asked to suggest what style of basketball Indonesia should play. However, his presentation indirectly allows us to draw conclusions about the most appropriate style of play for Indonesia, which on average has the same posture as Japan.
It also provides a clear explanation of the aspects that need to be strengthened. The most important thing, according to him, is that the coach understands the culture of his players and the players believe that this style of play can work well even if it takes time.
Next are Yuta Watanabe, a Toronto Raptors player in NBA competition, and Thon Maker, an Australian center who has also experienced the harshness of NBA competition. These two characters are very warm to the fans and the media. The status of a world-class player is not felt. I happened to be able to talk to both of them.
They are very polite and seem to understand the comments we want to hear from them when answering our questions. Thon, in an interview with a media partner, surprised me because before he started he politely asked in which direction the journalist friend wanted him to speak.
Next is Khalid M Abdel Gabar, a Saudi point guard whose team came home early because they never won. After losing to Jordan and being knocked out, he remained calm as he answered questions from reporters. This great Canadian player explained and expressed his disappointment in the best way I have ever seen. There was still a small smile on his face amidst the sadness.
The same was shown by Wael Arakji, the Lebanese point guard who lost in the final, but was still able to speak politely and be awake even though the rest of the disappointment was still etched on his face. It would be great if our athletes, not just basketball players, could be like them, able to control their emotions well when they lose.
From a technical standpoint, it’s great to see different styles of basketball showcased on the court at home without having to spend tens of millions of dollars overseas. I can see how they prepare up close, from practice to warm-ups to battles on the pitch. all kinds adjustment tactics by responding to the dynamics of the match, is very interesting to watch.
I hope all parties will learn from the presence of the FIBA Asia Cup 2022. Starting with players, coaches and fans.
Our professional basketball players, and those who are starting their basketball careers, must be aware that to be just an Asian level basketball player, they have to work hard to improve a number of fundamental and technical aspects. To be a great basketball player, it takes hard work, dedication and a sense of insatiability. Great basketball players don’t come from a lot of social media followers or how often they get compliments.
Fans should also understand that we should not wait far from reality for our basketball players, but at the same time help them develop. Without even making fun of our players to reprimand us.
It’s also time for our coach to move on from his size reason when he loses. Or call the more experienced opponent to ask for forgiveness in case of defeat. On the other hand, he said, his team was full of old players, so it was hard to keep up with the speed and energy of the young players.
“Playing basketball takes 40 minutes,” Tom said. On another occasion, coach Jad El Hajj gave full praise to opponents Australia ahead of the 2012 FIBA Asia Cup Final. “But we have 40 minutes to fight.” Of course, as outsiderLebanon fought until the last point, before losing 73-75.
Of course, the FIBA Asia Cup will not return in the near future. But the good news is that next year we will host the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023. World-class teams will return to Jakarta to compete in venue new Indonesia Arena. Me and other basketball fans can definitely learn new things later.
Oh yes, the FIBA Asia Cup 2022 has received praise from FIBA. Hopefully it will be a good investment for Indonesia to host the FIBA Basketball World Cup next year.
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