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Monday, January 03, 2000, updated at 09:19(GMT+8)
Sports Shandong Beats Shanghai to Stop Its Slumping

Slumping Shandong Bulls, backed by All-Star Gong Xiaobin's 22 points, nipped Shanghai Sharks 81-71 on Sunday, stopping their slip down on the standings at the 13th round of the Chinese basketball league.

The host Shandong was tied 4-4 and 8-8 by visitors at the beginning of the game but took the lead throughout the way before sealing the fight, which was Shandong's seventh victory in the 13 games this season.

Gong also contributed 18 rebounds to Shandong, who led the first half 46-31. Yao Ming, 2.25-meter center, scored a game-high 28 points and grabbed 17 rebounds for Shanghai, who is sharing second with Guangdong Hongyuan with a 9-4 record.

With Sunday's win Shandong promoted to seventh place in the standings, behind Bayi Rockets (12-1), Shanghai, Guangdong Hongyuan, and Beijing Ducks, liaoning Hunters and Jiangsu Dragons, all three teams with 8-5.

In Beijing, guard Lu Yandong paced Ducks to a 79-74 win over Vanguards Aoshen for their no loss and seventh home winning streak this season.

Beijing took the lead 34-32 at halftime but trailed 54-55 before coming back in the last minutes of the game.

Yuan Zhinan led Vanguards Aoshen with 22 points. All-Star Bateer was held to eight points but got 15 rebounds at home court.

In Dongguan, Guangdong Province, Hongyuan narrowly defeated Zhejiang Cyclone 108-107 for a big victory, coming up to equal Shanghai in the staanding from third place before after the 12th round.

In Changshu, Jiangsu Province, Hu Weidong scored 40 points, his fouth 40 or more this season, and gave 15 assists to lead Jiangsu Dragons for their eighth victory, beating the league's worest and winless Nanjing Army 125-100.

In Wuhan, defending champions Bayi Rockets trounced the second worest team Hubei Mei'erya 100-80 to continue their solo lead with one loss to Beijingt in a road game earlier last month. Guangdong led the first half at 60-57.

In Shenyang, Liaoning edged their neighbor Jilin Northeast Tigers 95-92 after a 46-42 halftime advantage. (Xinhua)

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