NEW DELHI (FIBA Asia Championship for Women) - India travelled to Thailand to play at the FIBA Asia Championship for Women last month knowing they had no realistic chance of claiming one of the three places on offer for the 2014 FIBA World Championship for Women.
Japan, Korea, China and Chinese Taipei are far more competitive than the chasing pack.
The Japanese, Koreans and Chinese finished first, second and third, respectively.
"For us it's very difficult because we play against top teams in the world like China, Japan and Korea," India's Spanish coach Francisco Garcia said to FIBA.com.
"We don't have enough ability to play against these teams.
"Logically, in India there is a lack of professional basketball, there is no competitive league, something that allows players to grow."
As part of their preparations for the FIBA Asia Championship, Garcia coached the team in the Far East.
"Before the tournament, we played in China for 10 days and we did a good job," he said.
"The problem with my team is that it is not used to competing and when you face true rivals, that defend well, that is when our problems increase.
"But this is the reality and we have to gain experience and learn from playing against these rivals."
Garcia did go to Bangkok hoping India would secure their Level I status.
They did, too, with a 74-59 triumph over Malaysia in a qualifying game at the end of the tournament.
India's other win in the tournament came against Kazakhstan in the Preliminary Round.
"We had a lot of trouble just to put the team together," Garcia said.
"Geethu Anna Jose came just three weeks before the championship and she had gone a long time without playing, and then Prashanti Singh came one month before practice and the championship, also.
"So we had a lot of problems to have the team together.
"We had just two months of practice together. You cannot prepare with just two months of practice and play at this level.
"We'll try to improve this for the next time."
Is reaching the podium in the future a possibility for India?
Their performances against solid teams in Bangkok, however, suggest it's unlikely to happen anytime soon.
India crashed to heavy defeats to Chinese Taipei (85-57), Korea (109-62), China (97-36) and Japan (81-40).
Garcia will do what he can to help the team improve.
"I am under contract for another year in India," he said.
"I am very enthusiastic and looking to try to grow and do things better.
"I've only been here two months and I'm trying to adapt and learn about basketball here. I hope that little by little, we can grow together.
"I will be based in India, coaching young players and trying to improve."
Garcia would have been an unknown when he arrived in India and certainly the opposing coaches in Bangkok did not have much knowledge of his work.
"I coached for two years in the Liga Femenina 2, which is a strong league, but I was attracted to leave Spain and coach abroad," he said.
"I already had experience of this when coaching in Finland and Denmark and India was a challenge that appealed to me."
He has worked with some of the most famous players ever to wear the Spanish national team shirt.
"I coached Amaya Valdemoro, Elisa Aguilar and Laura Nicholls at different points of my career and I know the players well," he said.
Garcia understood the task of leading India would be hard.
"There are frustrating times when coaching India," he said, "especially when you see the level in comparison to other teams, but it's something that you have to overcome and move on.
"The idea is for the level to improve in the future and that is what I'm working on."