LONDON, United Kingdom (2012 London Olympics): Veteran Miao Lijie equaled her best showing in assists in a single international game dishing out 8 assists as the Chinese women went on to stun 2010 FIBA World Championship for Women silver medalists Czech Republic 66-57 (Game report) on the opening day of the Olympic women’s basketball competition on Saturday.
Miao had done a similar feat when China defeated Korea in the gold medal game of the 23rd FIBA Asia Championship for Women at Chennai in 2009.
The 31-year-old playing her third successive Olympics – at the 2008 Beijing Olympics four years ago, she led the scoring charts with an average of 17.9 points per game – had a subdued start in the other departments, but as the game’s highest scorer Ma Zengyu said: “Miao is always helpful on the court.”
“I am feeling too good yet. My body clock is not yet completely adjusted to the time difference (between Beijing and London),” Miao said.
Analyzing the game against the Czech Republic, a team ranked No 4 in the FIBA World Rankings for Women (China are ranked No 7), Miao said: “This was a tough game, playing against a team that came in second at the World Championship.”
“It was a great game and we did a good job playing against a strong team,” said Miao who went on to score a dozen points, 8 of them in second half when China consolidated the gains made in the first.
Assessing the path ahead for the team, Miao said: “We are yet a little shaky in the defense. We allowed too many fast breaks.”
“We need to work more on the speed in defense. Our reaction time in defense should also be faster,” she said.