SEA Games: Why Myanmar’s top player impresses Tim Cone

Camille B. Naredo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 08 2019 09:12 AM | Updated as of Dec 08 2019 03:34 PM

Aung Myint got going early for Myanmar, because the Philippines let him do his thing. "He surprised us early in the game," coach Tim Cone said. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

MANILA, Philippines—Myanmar lost by a wide margin to the Philippines in the 30th Southeast Asian Games, but the visitors can take comfort in the challenge that they gave to Gilas Pilipinas in the first quarter of their game Saturday.

Aung Myint set the tone for Myanmar, scoring 14 points in the opening period and waxing hot from behind the arc. With him finding his scoring touch, Gilas settled for a slim 8-point lead 32-24 at the end of the first 10 minutes.

The Philippines went on to break the game open in the second quarter, scoring 45 points and limiting Myanmar to just 12. Aung finished with 28 points, but his team absorbed a 136-67 defeat.

"He was awesome," Gilas coach Tim Cone said of Myanmar's top scorer. "He was making some incredible shots."

Cone acknowledged that Gilas may have taken Aung for granted, and the Burmese player made them pay with a bevy of 3-pointers and crafty layups. 

"We control the confidence of the other team, and we gave them confidence early because we were letting him take any shot he wanted," Cone said.

"When we started play him hard, he already had that confidence, and he was making shots all over the place.

"Credit to him, and he's a nice player, and quick, and he can shoot the ball. He surprised us early in the game."

Aung, for his part, credited his teammates for his fine performance, noting that they were the ones assisting him on his shots.

"The Philippine team is bigger than our team, and taller than our team," Aung said through a translator. "(I) got skills and knowledge from the Philippine team."

Myanmar finished the tournament with a 0-3 record, having lost its games by an average margin of 39.7 points.

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2019 SEA Games