The Korean women’s basketball team has gotten off to a great start at the Hangzhou 2022 Asian Games.
In today’s (27th) game against Thailand, the team started well from the first quarter. Kim Dan-bi (Asan Woori Bank) and Park Ji-soo (Cheongju KB) started the game well. Park Ji-soo, Kim Dan-bi, and Kang Isul are the big three in 텍사스홀덤 Korean women’s basketball. Park Ji-soo opened up a good flow for the team with her under-the-basket scoring, and her defense was also good, so we were able to start the first quarter well and go up 15-3.
At guard, Lee Kyung-eun (Incheon Shinhan Bank) is a veteran and did her job well in the middle of the game. With all the different elements working well, we were able to finish the first quarter with a 25-7 lead. I think it was good that we finished the first quarter well. Thailand is not a strong team, but it was the first game and the players were nervous. However, thanks to the good finish of the first quarter, the second quarter was well organized with a good atmosphere. Young players such as Park Ji-hyun (Woori Bank) and Lee So-hee (Busan BNK) also came on as substitutes and gave us a lot of strength. It’s true that Thailand is not as good as Korea in terms of skill, height, and everything else. Taking that into consideration, it was a good first half.
What stood out in the second half was the full-court defensive press, which was implemented halfway through the first quarter. Thanks to the changes that Coach Jung made in the defense, the opponent was not able to follow easily and was confused in the third quarter. There were also several plays by Lee Hae-ran that were memorable. At the end of the third quarter, the score was 78-33, a difference of nearly 50 points. At this point, the game was completely split.
In the fourth quarter, Coach Jung didn’t really care about the outcome of the game. He rotated several players in and out of the game, presumably for conditioning purposes. Considering that, it was a well-organized game management. Not only did we win, but we also prepared well for our next game against North Korea.
If I had to pick an MVP (Most Valuable Player), it would be Park Ji-soo. He came back healthy after being sick last year. Especially defensively, he was a threat to Thailand, who tried to attack from the inside. His own offense was also good. He scored 12 points in the first quarter alone. Park Ji-soo played a big role in the offense.
Park Ji-soo’s performance will be important in the future. We can still attack through her, and if she gets blocked, she can still play her role on defense instead of offense. It would be nice to see the team’s offensive game plan, where Park’s defense leads to transition and fast breaks, work well against North Korea. Look for Park to continue to play both inside and outside.
Most importantly, there is an offense derived from Park Ji-soo. If Park Ji-soo is able to play defense as well as attack from the inside, Kang Isul, Kim Dan-bi, Park Ji-hyun, and others will have more chances to run the offense. This is something that opponents may not be able to find a solution to in the future. Opponents will have to think about how to attack Park Ji-soo under the basket. Moreover, if the opponent tries to attack Park too much, it could backfire.
It was a good day for the rest of the team, not just Park Ji-soo. However, it will be important to see if they can continue to perform like this in future matches against stronger teams. It will be important to see how consistently they can get the ball in transition, even in a seesaw game. That’s why I think Park Ji-soo’s performance is more important.
I would like to say that Coach Jeong Sun-min did a good job in the first game, and the overall defense stood out today. Of course, I don’t know if he won’t play zone defense in important matches like the quarterfinals or the final. You can still play a full-court press with multiple players. I’m sure the scouts from other national teams watched us a lot today, so they might have taken that into consideration.
The most important thing is communication and morale. Sotoi’s communication with the players and the coach, and the morale of the team through him, should be high. You can’t judge everything from the first game against Thailand, but I saw a good first game. I’m looking forward to the next match against North Korea.