The Chinese women’s basketball team improved to 2-0 in the group stage at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, defeating Australia 76-74. Australia made things interesting in the fourth quarter by clinching China 27-21 and leveling the game at 74 near the end of regulation, but Yueru Li struck a couple of free kicks with another 0.6 seconds to reach the agreement for the Chinese to conclude. .
China – led by Siyu Wang with 20 points and 5 rebounds – once again played excellent basketball, scoring 24 of its 26 goals. With their victory over Australia officially qualifying for the upcoming quarter-finals, the Chinese women’s basketball team can win a medal at the Olympic Games for the first time since 1992.
Australia continues its disappointing Olympic performance. While the Opals were classified as the second best team in the world by FIBA in March, a pre-Olympic Games power position was much less optimistic and beat Australia in fifth place after the withdrawal of star center Liz Cambage.
The Opals did not really do much to change the projection. While rising star Ezi Magbegor (15 points and 5 rebounds) filled in well enough for Cambage, Australia did not get the kind of production it needed on the wing from players like Stephanie Talbot and Rebecca Allen. And without a real option, the team that would probably be favored in Group C now runs the risk of missing out on the Olympics altogether.
France bounces back, defeats Nigeria
After he dropped it Olympic Opener to Japan, France achieved a much stronger performance against Nigeria, with five double-digit attempts at a 87-62 victory. Gabby Williams captured the French score with 13 points, nine rebounds, four assists and three steals.
Balance was the name of the game for France. Sandrine Gruda scored the team with 14 points, while Williams, Marine Johannès, Alix Duchet and Endy Miyem each scored 13 points. France took control of the game from the start, leading 44-27 at halftime and the rest of the way.
In addition to the obvious inequality – France achieved 50 percent of its field goals, while Nigeria achieved only 35 percent – rebound was also a major factor. France outscored Nigeria 45-32, with no individual Nigerian player securing more than four rebounds in the match.
While France is still in third place in Group B behind the United States and Japan, the team is now in a good position to advance to the quarterfinals, especially due to its recent skewed victory. Nigeria, on the other hand, are now almost out and fall to 0-2 with few realistic paths in the tournament.