Asian powerhouse Al Riyadi of Lebanon defeated Iran's Mahram in the preliminary round of the FIBA Asia Champions Cup on Monday. Mahram, which had already overcome Syria's Al Jalaa and Al Shabab of the UAE, was defeated 76-73 at the Philsports Multi-Purpose Arena in Pasig, the Philippines.
photo by FIBA
Mahram is in Pool B along with Al Shabab of the UAE, last year's finalists Al Rayyan of Qatar as well as WABA heavyweights Al Riyadi of Lebanon and Syria's Al Jalaa.
Pool A consists of KL Dragons of Malaysia, Al-Ittihad of Saudi Arabia, Smart Gilas of the Philippines, Duhok Sports Club of Iraq and Jordan's ASU Sports.
The four best teams from each group advance to the final round with the top two survivors will play in a one-game final for the Champions Cup.
Iran actually won the last four editions of the events that began in 1981 in Hong Kong, with Sabah Battery of Tehran bagging the titles in 2007 and 2008, before Mahram did its share in 2009 and 2010, respectively.
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