In a meeting marked by tests, constant bench rotation, nerves and inaccuracies typical of any premiere, the Spanish National Team has been able to add its first triumph within its preparatory tour for the Tokyo Olympic Games. A clash in which Spain had to work hard to beat Iran and in which Sergio Scariolo’s players laid the foundations for what their game will be for the next few weeks.
PHOTOS: Image gallery of the game on Flickr FEB
Spain vs Iran (88-61) / Statistics
Ricky Rubio. That was the first protagonist of the Spanish National Team during their competitive debut on the Desafío Tokio tour. Because the base of the Spanish National Team assumed the leadership of the game throughout the first quarter against an Iranian National Team that focused all its efforts on how to stop the Catalan player (7-3). Quite an odyssey for a team that saw how the Catalan opened his personal locker at the same time that he was able to find his teammates with different fantasy assists. The first positive data of a meeting that was animated, just a few moments later, with the return to the slopes with the Selection of a Pau Gasol capable of displacing the public from their seats with his mere presence. Even more so when the center of Sant Boi managed to score again with the National Team shirt with a superb 2 + 1 with which to decorate the triples of Willy Hernangómez and Rudy Fernández (19-13).
With a quintet with fewer centimeters, but full of quality, the Spanish National Team started a second quarter in which they gained mobility in attack and in which Usman Garuba debuted on the floor. A whole project for the future that did not take long to hang on to the rings to contribute to the first important income for Scariolo’s men (27-19). Although the course of the second quarter brought with it the first problems for a Spain lack of rhythm and that saw how Iran attacked its zonal defense to reverse the score with a good partial culminated by a 2 + 1 (30-31). An inertia that was maintained during the last despite the constant attempts by Pau Gasol to reverse a score in which Iran managed to stay ahead until the break (37-36).
Spain needed to grow on the rebound and Marc Gasol took care of this after passing through the changing rooms. The most solid man under the rings in the first few bars in which the Abalde-Brizuela connection began to shine with its own light. Because, between them, they allowed Spain to anticipate rival pass lines to sign a 10-2 run that completely reversed the score (47-38). And, both players felt really comfortable and with the necessary confidence when it came to being able to surprise even from 6.75. A set of factors that allowed Spain to take off on a scoreboard that, near the end of the third quarter, was beginning to anticipate the inaugural triumph of the summer (65-46).
Little history already had the meeting during its last ten minutes in relation to the fight for victory. Not so in the tactical plane where Sergio Scariolo continued to distribute minutes to deliver an extra dose of confidence to Carlos Alocen moments before Sergi Martínez’s debut with the team. Spain managed to maintain the competitive level and a 2 + 1, precisely from the Blaugrana player, together with a triple from Abalde, served to keep the team above twenty goals of difference (81-59). The best possible ending for an afternoon of those that add up positively in all aspects (88-61).