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Qatar dethrones PH

The Philippines fell a win shy of retaining the FIBA 3×3 U-18 Asian Championships after losing 21-9 to Qatar in Sunday’s final at the Gem-In Shopping Mall in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

The Filipino squad composed of Rhayyan Amsali, John Lloyd Clemente, John Martin Galinato, and Kyle Christian Tan had no answer against the Qataris to settle for a runnerup finish in the three-day competition.

Amsali, Clemente, Galinato and Tan had to win twice on Sunday to reach the final, beating Indonesia, 21-16, in the quarters, before surviving host Malaysia, 21-20, in the semis.

But they were handily beaten by a Qatar squad that had an easy route to the championship game following wins over Kyrgystan (18-12) and Japan (21-8), failing to equal the 2013 title triumph of the team powered by Kobe Paras and Thirdy Ravena.

Qatar beat the Philippines for the second straight time in the tournament, winning 21-15 in their initial match on opening day.

The Filipinos responded with triumphs over South Korea (21-9), Japan (21-17) and Vietnam (21-6) to qualify in the knockout rounds.