Basketball: Defending champions Royal Bhutan Army (RBA) thrashed Bank of Bhutan (BoB) 61-38 to reach their third departmental basketball finals at the Swimming Pool Complex in Thimphu yesterday.

Both the teams started well in the beginning with emphasis on defence. However, it was the soldiers from RBA who took the lead starting the second quarter.

Unlike in the previous games, BoB’s main player Passang Norbu couldn’t lead his team to another victory. The six-foot-four inch player was hounded by the soldiers restricting him to 19 points, the highest for BoB.

BoB fought until the final quarter to get back into the game with fast breaks but much to their dismay, the faster and more agile soldiers disrupted BoB’s techniques and game plan. Dawa from RBA was the high scorer with 24 points.

In the women’s category, team Bhutan Olympic Committee (BOC) defeated Royal Monetary Authority (RMA) 55-34. It was a shaky start for BOC in the first quarter. Before the players could settle down, RMA made four quick baskets within five minutes of the quarter.

Now well settled in the game, BOC fought back and equalised the score at four baskets each at the end of the first quarter. The team dominated the second quarter taking the score to 30-10 at the end of the quarter.

However, it was a seesaw battle between the two teams. RMA got back in the third quarter but BOC managed to hold on to their lead. BOC took the third quarter but the deficit was now marginal. The weak defence from RMA was thoroughly exploited by BOC and gave them an opportunity to play their first departmental finals.

Meanwhile, in a closely contested match Bhutan Basketball Federation (BBF) lost 71-65 to Royal Bhutan Police (RBP).

In the last game Drukair (women) defeated BoB 39-36 to reach their second departmental  finals.

The finals will be played tomorrow at the Swimming Pool Complex at 5pm.

Younten Tshedup