Source : AKTV
Iran has won two of the last three FIBA Asia Championship tournaments, and coach Memi Becirovic is not bashful about his team’s chances in the 2013 edition of the competition.
“We are going to win the title but five or six other teams want to do that,” the Slovenian coach told the Tehran Times before the team’s departure for Manila on Sunday.
Despite his confidence, Becirovic identified several other teams as contenders, including the host nation.
“Teams such as South Korea and the Philippines are dangerous as well as China,” he said.
Iran won the Asian championship in 2007 and 2009, before falling in a quarterfinals upset in the 2011 staging of the competition. But the powerhouse squad, led by mammoth NBA center Hamed Haddadi and Asian scoring superstar Samad Nikkhah Bahrami, is heading into the competition with a lot of confidence, especially after winning the William Jones Cup in Taiwan last month.
“I believe in my team and without a doubt I am coach of the best Asian team in the competitions. We have won Williams Jones Cup last month and it shows we are on the right track,” said Becirovic.
Iran is bracketed in Group C, tabbed by observers as the “Group of Death” with fellow contenders China and South Korea, alongside minnow Malaysia.