Patrick Anderson led the way with 34 points as Team Canada defeated Team Japan 76-55 in international friendly wheelchair basketball on Thursday night at the Toronto Pan Am Sports Centre.
Nick Goncin and Bo Hedges also contributed strong secondary scoring for Canada as they continue to prepare for the Lima 2019 Parapan American Games in August.
That event is also the qualifier for the 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo.
Japan’s emerging star Renshi Chokai scored 11 points while Noahiro Murakami had 14 points for Japan in the losing effort. The visitors were missing three of their starters in this friendly competition.
Canadian coach Matteo Feriani knows his club still has work to do.
“We were unsuccessful during the World Championships, we’re still a work in progress,” and that Tokyo 2020 was still the plan for this young team. Feriani also praised the younger players noting that injuries have been an issue and they are relying on rotation more than ever before.
Canada led 42-23 after the first half as Japan could not contain Patrick Anderson who had 22 points by half time.
This is a positive step for Team Canada as they have failed to reach the podium in recent world events, most notably finishing sixth in Group A at the 2016 Rio Paralympics and 12th at the 2018 world championships.
Mayor John Tory made an appearance near the end of the game and was talking to players of both teams.