WUHAN, China (26th FIBA Asia Championship): Chinese Taipei hired former San Antonio Spurs coach Bob Hill as a consultant to the National Team and the team has shown some remarkable discipline in their approach dropping games only to tournament favorites Iran and Korea en route to their third successive entry into the last eight.
“We have a lot of work to do,” Hill said in an exclusive chat with this website after the team made the cut into the play-offs.
On the team’s performance
We still have a lot of things we can improve on. And at times we have shown tremendous improvement. I thought we played a really good game against Iran.
But then there are times like against Korea, when we haven’t looked good at all. We looked a very badly coached team.
We haven’t really played to our potential, which is a little bit disappointing.
We kind of play to the level of our opponent. So the Philippines game (quarterfinal) will be good.
Did you aim for a top-fight finish when you came in?
I can’t say much about that, because this is my first FIBA Asia Championship. But after seeing the teams I feel good making the top eight.
But we got to nurse our wins and done the things we need to do. We haven’t been consistent, that’s something we have to work on.
Do you think any you can higher than a top-eight?
That’ll be a real challenge for us. I think the Philippines are awfully good. There are some really good teams here.
But I think Iran kind of separate themselves from the rest with their experience. And they play great team defense.
I think the rest of this tournament is going to be really exciting to watch.
In your own assessment, what is your contribution to this team?
It’s hard for me to say that.
I’ve been with this team for the last four months. We did a lot of individual stuff early on. So hopefully I gave them something to work on.
Team wise, there are times when we’ve looked really good. And there were times like against Korea when we looked bad.
There’s no instant gratification in basketball. It’s a lot of sacrifice and hard work and takes time.
I am pleased with a lot of things that’s happened with them. But we still have a long way to go.
S Mageshwaran / FIBA Asia
Photo: Milad Payami / FIBA Asia