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"Hard Work and Talent" is the forty forth chapter in Ahiru no Sora.

Chapter Summary

An excited Tokiwa informs his Captain that this year's Inter-High Preliminaries will be interesting

Nao notices her cousin’s Tarou incredible stamina and becomes worried about Sora, who looks to be a bit out of breath. Meanwhile, after watching a changed and improved Kuzuryu High, an excited Tokiwa heads to his schools’ basketball court. Upon arrival, Tokiwa sees his Captain, Shinichi, practicing and questions his presence at the gym because today was his off day. Shinichi stares at Tokiwa and tells him that he had nothing else to do. Chiba then questions Tokiwa’s presence that he should be at the music studio. Upon hearing, Tokiwa stated that he ran into some kind of a surprise on the way. Tokiwa further indicates that this year Inter-High Preliminaries will be interesting. Chiba sees his fired-up teammate and smiles.

Meanwhile, at the ongoing intense practice match between Kuzuryu High and Kitasumi High, Yasuhara gets into foul trouble by pushing his opponent. Natsume cautions his teammate that it is his third foul. An impressed Madoka looks at Sora and his teammates. Yabuchi further states that Sora’s defense has been the key to fending off a determined Kitasumi High team. Tarou tries to score, the ball touches the rim, and Momoharu tries to grab the offensive rebound. However, Hanazono's attempt remains futile; Konishi touches the ball before him, everyone at Kitasumi High praises Konishi for his efforts. Tachibana grabs the loose ball and passes it to Katori. Hasebe, to help his teammate, Tarou, lose Sora’s mark, sets up an efficient screen. Katori then passes the ball to Tarou. Kenji sees the pass and blocks it. However, the ball goes outbounds, and it is Kitasumi High’s possession.

Yasuhara and Kenji try to stop a determined Tarou Kabachi

Tarou is amazed at Natsume’s basketball skills and also gets a bit jealous of his good-looking appearance. Nao complains and informs Kenji that he left his mark. Natsume states that if he hadn’t blocked that pass, Tarou would have indeed scored. Kuzuryu High continues their pressure defense on Kitasumi High. Tarou requests his teammate Katori to pass the ball to him. Katori ignores him and instructs Hasebe to move back a bit further from the Kuzuryu High’s defense. Katori sees an opening and tries to pass the ball to Tachibana. Sora steals the ball and scores. Tarou is surprised and amazed at Kuzuryu High’s performance and instructs his teammate, Katori, to keep passing the ball around when they’re on offense. While guarding, Sora notices that Tarou’s speed has increased a bit. Upon stopping him, Sora’s legs start to feel a bit heavy. Katori notices an exhausted Sora and passes the ball to Tarou. Kenji and Yasuhara break their man-to-man defense, and both try to stop a determined Tarou. Kabachi, unfazed by his adversary’s defense, gets himself in position and scores the point. Kitasumi High is slowly catching up to Kuzuryu High. A concerned Nao then notices a tired and exhausted Sora and requests for a member change.

Characters

Reference

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