Russell Westbrook, James Harden lead Houston’s comeback, Latest Basketball News - The New Paper

Russell Westbrook, James Harden lead Houston’s comeback

Russell Westbrook scored 25 of his 31 points in the first half, and James Harden finished with 28 as the Houston Rockets rallied for a 109-107 NBA win over the visiting San Antonio Spurs yesterday morning (Singapore time).

Houston trailed by 25 in the second quarter and by 19 at the half, but roared back behind Harden and Westbrook, assuming a 101-97 lead on a Harden dunk with 4:46 seconds to play.

Ben McLemore added 17 points for the Rockets, with Clint Capela posting 15 points and 15 rebounds.

P.J.Tucker grabbed 11 rebounds for Houston, and Westbrook corralled 10 boards.

LaMarcus Aldridge led the Spurs with 19 points and 13 rebounds, while Rudy Gay and DeMar DeRozan each hit for 12.

Gay also had 12 rebounds.

Bryn Forbes scored 18 points, all in the first half on six 3-pointers, while Dejounte Murray and Derrick White scored 16 points each. - REUTERS

OTHER RESULTS: Detroit 119 Washington 133,

Toronto 133 Cleveland 113, Memphis 118 Miami 111, Milwaukee 116 Dallas 120, Oklahoma City 109

Chicago 106, Phoenix 110 Portland 111.

Japanese football heroines to kick off Olympic torch relay

Japan's 2011 Women's World Cup-winning team will kick off next year's Tokyo Olympic torch relay in Fukushima, the area devastated by a tsunami, earthquake and nuclear meltdown eight years ago.

Organisers said yesterday that the Olympic flame would begin the Japan leg of its journey on March 26, starting at the J-Village sports training centre in Fukushima.

It will pass through all of Japan's 47 prefectures on its 121-day journey. Defender Azusa Iwashimizu is expecting to give birth in March, but hopes she will be able to take her new child on the relay.

"I would like to run carrying my baby," she said. - AFP