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Australia tops China 67-55 in basketball warm-up for Olympics
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Australia was better off at a physical game by beating China 67-55 at the Diamond Cup men's basketball tournament in Nanjing on Wednesday.

Chris Anstey led Australia by 11 points and David Andersen added 10 in the warm-up, which was more like an Olympic match-up full of pushing, scrambling, unsportsmanship fouls and even minor brawls.

Houston Rockets' center Yao Ming had the game-high 14 points and seven rebounds for China, while Li Nan added 11.

Neither team had a fluid shooting match but Australia took the advantage of 25 turnovers from China, scoring 10 points on fast breaks when China had none.

"We didn't give our best. Australians' defense made lots of troubles on us. But I think it's good to us because it had the taste of an Olympic game. It helps us be more prepared for the Olympics," guard Zhang Qingpeng said.

China started without top scorer Zhu Fangyu, and starting point guard Liu Wei was taken off as he collided with Australia's center Anstey towards the end of the first quarter.

Liu was taken to hospital right after the collision. "We'll check it out about his injury after we go back to the hotel," China's head coach Jonas Kaslauskas said.

Anstey, from Melbourne Tigers, scored six straight points to give Australia a 20-13 lead in the first quarter.

China shot badly in the field, 8-out-of-24, to let Australia open a 38-28 lead in the first half.

Teams battled in every corner on the court as they scored eight points in total half way into the third quarter before Australia maintained a 55-45 lead in the end.

Du Feng's two free throws made it 55-49 in the fourth quarter, but China failed to capitalize two unsportsmanship fouls to close the gap.

China shot 15-out-of-45 in the field, the worst among its 14 warm-ups this summer. Yao had four fouls and five turnovers in the game.

(Xinhua News Agency July 31, 2008)

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