Angola took a morale boost as it edged China 72-71 here on Saturday at the Stankovic Continental Cup which serves as men's basketball warm-up before the Beijing Olympics.
Guard Olympio Cipriano scored a game-winning basket inside the paint when he faced China's center Yao Ming with 25 seconds left.
New Jersey Nets' forward Yi Jianlian missed a lay-up on the following possession and scrambled with Yao for an offensive rebounds before Angola recovered the loose ball in the dying minutes.
China's NBA star Yao Ming looks for a pass during the game against Angola at the Stankovic Cup basketball Olympic warmup tournament in Hangzhou, capital of east China's Zhejiang Province, July 19, 2008. China lost 71-72.
It was the first loss for China of the year as it went on to a 12-1 run during the Olympic warm-ups.
Yao played his second match after injury, scoring 16 points and seven rebounds in 20 minutes.
"Yao still cannot play a full game because of his foot injury. I exchange information about his injury with his doctor as much as I can. I hope he'll take the full recovery at the Olympics," China head coach Jonas Kazlauskas said.
Carlos Morais had the game-high 20 points and Joaquim Gomes added 14 points and eight rebounds for Angola, which will meet China at the Olympic competition on August 16.
Yi led China with 18 points and 11 rebounds.
China shot badly on 3-pointers as it was 1-out-of-13 in the first half, while Angola was 7-out-of-9 in the single third quarter, to open a 59-49 lead.
The African champion had the biggest lead on 65-51 with 5:39 minutes left.
Zhu Fangyu had eight points to lead China to 17-2 run in four minutes when Yao made a three-point play on 68-67 with 1:31 minutes to go.
Gomes' jumper regained the lead before Yi put China ahead again with 49 seconds left on the clock.Source: Xinhua