The 32-year-old made his 119th international appearance in Spain's 1-0 UEFA Nations League win at home to Switzerland on Saturday and is in line to start in Ukraine on Tuesday night, although he admits that the progress of players such as Mikel Merino and Rodrigo Hernandez means there is more competition in the central midfield role.
In the constructors' standings, Mercedes remain well out in front on 391 points, ahead of Red Bull with 211, with Racing Point moving up to third on 120 points.
Spain coach Luis Enrique made several changes to his side, with David de Gea returning in goal, while Ansu Fati was on the left of the Spanish attack and Oyarzabal returned to action after missing out on the midweek friendly in Portugal after a non-conclusive coronavirus test.
"Hearing the saddening news, I burst into tears. Kobe had a huge influence on me. His grit and dedication pushed me to fight until this end out of love for basketball," Ji said.
In a finely balanced match, where the two teams saw the biggest lead of eight points, Ji missed a buzzer-beating three-pointer that could have secured Daqing's win in regulation time.
"We have to give ourselves credit for taking the game seriously," he said. "Despite scoring one or two early goals we continued to give our all and that's what you expect from Brazil's national team."
Playing at a high level for a decade, Ji said she has no secret other than self-discipline and hard work.
"The players will have several days off after the league ends. Then we will have the first training session at Xianghe national training center near Beijing, mainly for recovery. The second phase will be a one-month camp focusing on honing techniques and tactics. In the third phase, we will warm up on home turf for the game," he said.
Due to the strict preventative measures, even though new coronavirus infections and fatalities have been spiking worldwide and across the United States, COVID-19 activity has stayed comparatively low in California, where most key figures are either slowly declining or flattening. Enditem
Germany is second in the top-tier Group A4 with five points. Next for Joachim Loew's side is Switzerland on Tuesday, while Ukraine, third place in the same group, hosts Spain on the same day. Enditem
The 31-year-old Liu shot 13 of 20 from the floor and pocketed 29 points. Xing Jinbo led the Shanxi bench with 16 points. Wu Tongtong and Yu Dong nailed 17 and 13 respectively.