Australia, Canada and Turkey have joined the other four quarterfinalists following the fourth day of Olympic basketball tournament. Last spot is up for grabs for the Czechs who just need to defeat Angola on Sunday.
Angolan girls give it all in these games, but they severely lack talent and some skill. That was the case also on Friday as Croatia outshot from behind the arc and outrebounded the African champions.
For Croatia this was a first historic win that allows them to remain in the contention for a spot in the quarterfinals, although the chances of succeeding at that are very minimal.
Angola – Croatia 56-75
Angola: Tomas 15, Manuel 14, Mauricio 12
Croatia: Lelas 23, Mandir 18, Vrsaljko 10
Australia showed some improvements from their previous two games, but that might have come with the referees allowing players to get away with more contact than usual, which allowed their star center Liz Cambage to dominate the game. If these teams will meet in the playoff round, Russians will have to hope on a stricter refeereing because their current centers don’t posses the physical abilities to compete with Cambage.
Despite Cambage, Russians were in the game up until the end, mainly due to their guard play.
Russian center Natalia Vieru was elbowed hard in the stomach by Liz Cambage and she didn’t return to the game. After the game there were no updates on the status of her health. Vieru had started all four games for Russia, alongside Irina Osipova.
Russia – Australia 66-70
Russia: Osipova 15, Danilochkina 13, Hammon 12, Grishaeva 9
Australia: Cambage 17 (10 reb), Batkovic 15, O’Hea 10
In a recurring instance Brazilians were unable to successfully conclude another close game with a victory. They lost to Canada who they had dominated in FIBA Americas play for some time.
Outside of Erika de Souza and Clarissa dos Santos (who has been a pleasant surprise), Brazilians played awfully, especially on the defensive end where they allowed Canadians to shoot 66% from inside the arc and 52% overall from the field.
Canada clinched their spot in the quarterfinals with this victory, meaning that Brazil and Great Britain have been eliminated.
Brazil – Canada 73-79
Brazil: De Souza 22 (12 reb), Dos Santos 21 (10 reb), Ferreira 7
Canada: Pilypaitis 14, Smith 14, Tatham 13, Achonwa 11, Thorburn 10
Turkey obviously needed this win more than China, because it ensured them a place in the quarters, but the way China lost could be troubling for the them.
Having played very disciplined throughout the first three games in which they were victorious, China committed 20 turnovers being pressured by the small Turkish guards throughout the game. Before that they averaged 12.3 turnovers per game, the least in Olympics. They also let up on defense which previously had stifled such European teams like Croatia and Czech Republic. Turkey on the other hand were able to get all the high percentage shots they wished.
As they seem to be heading towards second place in Group A, the Turks have the capability to move past quarterfinals where they will play Group B’s third placed team.
Turkey – China 82-55
Turkey: Yilmaz 16, Tuncluer 12, Caglar 11, Alben 11, Hollingsworth 10 (11 reb), Vardarli 9
China: N.Chen 19, Ma 7, Miao 6, Gao 6
The Brits played yet another very competitive game, but were still unable to earn their first win. Celine Dumerc joined Ilona Korstin and Shona Thorburn as players who have been able to hurt their hopes for a win at the end of games. Dumerc first tied the game at the end of regulation with a sideways leaning three pointer, then won the game in overtime with a contested long bomb.
Led by an inspired Jo Leedham the Brits were deserving of a victory, but the French had other ideas. The last chance for the hosts to earn a victory will come on Sunday when they will face another winless team – Brazil.
Key for the French outside of Celine Dumerc was controlling scoring in the paint. British bigs were a combined 9 from 30 inside, while Sandrine Gruda by herself was 7 from 11.
France will face Russia on Sunday to determine seeding in group B – a win or a loss by 3 or less points will secure them the first place in group B. A loss by 5 or more points could mean them finishing third.
France – Great Britain 80-77 OT
France: Gruda 16, Lawson-Wade 16, Yacoubou 15, Dumerc 14
Great Britain: Leedham 29, Stafford 18, Butler 12
In a World Championships final re-match, USA repeated the outcome by defeating Czech Republic. As has been the case with previous Team USA games, there are not much conclusions to be made – USA are heading for gold while the losing side were able to play their reserves for extended minutes.
Czech Republic – USA 61-88
Czech Republic: Zrustova 15, Viteckova 12, Peckova 7
USA: Taurasi 18, Charles 16, Moore 14, Catchings 10