This article first appeared on SportsLook, JAPAN Forward's dedicated sports website.
Tenketsu Harimoto scored a team-high 22 points and Yuki Kawamura added 20 in Japan's 87-74 victory over host Bahrain in a 2023 FIBA Basketball World Cup Asian second-round qualifier on Friday, November 11 in Manama.
Japan, ranked 38th in the latest FIBA world rankings, jumped out to a 24-10 lead by the end of the first quarter, and coach Tom Hovasse's team led 50-33 entering the third quarter of the Group F match.
But Bahrain kept the pressure on in the second half, mounting a comeback. Devon Dwayne Chism's layup with 8:43 to play in the fourth quarter trimmed Japan's lead to 66-61.
Yutaro Suda scored on a layup to increase the margin to seven, and teammate Kai Toews' attack-the-basket hoop made it 70-62 with 6:59 remaining.
Bahrain pulled within 73-67 on an Ahmed Alderazi 3-pointer with 5:10 left, but Akatsuki Japan persevered and finished strong.
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Author: Ed Odeven
Follow Ed on JAPAN Forward's [Japan Sports Notebook] here on Sundays, in [Odds and Evens] here during the week, and Twitter ＠ed_odeven, and find him on JAPAN Forward’s dedicated sports website, SportsLook.