The gap between Korean and Japanese basketball has widened. The gap between Korean and Japanese girls’ basketball has widened more than we thought.
On the 8th, the ‘Wilson 2023 Ahn Deok-soo-Assist Korea-Japan Girls Basketball Camp with Wilson in Japan’ kicked off at the Wisdom Gakuen Junior and Senior High School Gymnasium in Sakai, Osaka, Japan. Ahn, along with 15 players from Sookmyung Girls’ Middle School, Buil Girls’ Middle School, and Cheongju Girls’ Middle School, travelled to Sakai City, Osaka, to help develop Korean girls’ basketball.
The camp,바카라사이트 which was organised in collaboration with the Osaka Sakai City Basketball Association, was attended by about 80 players, including 15 Korean players and three Japanese teams: the Wisdom Gakuen Middle School Basketball Team, Frontier Spirits and Fukai Little Peppers.
The first day of the camp consisted of back-to-back exchange games. All four teams participating in the camp played each other once. Korea’s first game was against the Hyunmyeong Middle School basketball team, followed by the Frontier Spirits and Fukai Little Peppers. At the end of the first day of the camp, at the request of the Hyunmyung Middle School coach, the Hyunmyung High School players also played against the Korean players.
The result was meaningless. Coaches Koo Jung-ho, Park Sung-wook, Lee Young-hyun, and Yoo Ran, who were also at the camp, rotated all the players to give them as many opportunities as possible. The players also gave their best and played against the Japanese players.
The match was meaningful. The 15 Korean players from their respective schools showed better coordination than expected, probably because they had worked together at the Korean camp in July. With 15 players giving their best, the stark difference between Korea and Japan was evident in the four games.
The Koreans played almost all of their basketball in the same general movements that anyone would expect to see – the easy, predictable, structured version of Korean basketball.
On the other hand, the Japanese team’s play was free and aggressive. No one on the court was afraid to take a shot, and when the opportunity presented itself, they took it quickly. Throughout the game, the Japanese teams pushed Korea with a man-to-man defence mixed with a full-court pressure defence.
Koo Jung-ho, who participated in the camp as an assistant camp director, said, “The Japanese players’ play was very noticeable. I would like Korean players to learn from their active attitude and lively movements, regardless of whether they are good or bad.”
This view was shared by coaches Park Sung-wook and Yoo Ran.
“Japanese players are very serious in their attitude towards basketball because they voluntarily join the team,” said Park Sung-wook, who accompanied the camp as a coach. “The Japanese teams we played with are basically good at man-to-man defence, and the scene where they spread the ball in a familiar system and immediately double-team the Koreans if they feel that their movements are a little slow gave me a strong feeling that ‘these guys know basketball’.” He evaluated the Japanese players.
“As I said earlier, the difference in attitude towards basketball is disappointing. Our players work hard, but they need to be a little more confident and aggressive on the court. In my personal opinion, Japan seems to be more proactive because most of their players started playing basketball voluntarily. On the other hand, in Korea, many players are scouted by basketball clubs rather than by their own will, so I think that’s where the difference lies.”
Onyang Dongshincho coach Yoo Ran, an active elementary school coach, said, “The players these days have definitely improved their skills. However, they don’t know how to play the game well. They need to improve their understanding of basketball so that they can make active moves themselves. If you look at the Japanese teams we played today, they play man-to-man defence. If you understand man-to-man defence, you can play good zone defence, and this is something Korean players need to learn. I hope the Korean players can learn something from the Japanese players who are not afraid to take shots.”
“The Korean players who participated in the camp experienced the Japanese players’ attitudes and movements first-hand, so I hope they will use it as nourishment for their own development when they return to Korea,” he said.
In recent years, Korea’s national teams have been losing to Japan in all age groups, regardless of gender. At the same time, the gap between Korean and Japanese grassroots basketball is also a reality that can be seen at the camp.