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BASKETBALL: Australia beat Nigeria’s D’Tigers as USA lose to France

Post created on July 25, 2021


Nigeria‘s men’s basketball team – D’Tigers came into Tokyo 2020 on the strength of two impressive wins in exhibition play against Argentina and powerhouses the United States – the first time any African nation defeated Team USA in basketball.

However, they did suffer a loss against Australia in their final warmup game, and suffered the same result on Sunday, losing 84-67.

Nigeria, featuring a roster laden with NBA players used a stronger line-up than the one that went down to the Boomers in the pre-Olympics exhibition series in Las Vegas earlier this month.

Nigeria’s coach, Mike Brown reiterated his stand that the team was not the finished article yet. He said,

“Because we beat team USA and Argentina, everyone thinks we have arrived. No we haven’t. We still have a long way to go.”

The African champions will need to work on their free throws after squandering 50 per cent of theirs as against Australia’s 90 per cent conversion rate.

Nigeria converted 46 per cent of their two point throws and managed only 29 per cent of their three pointers.

D’Tigers will face Germany on Wednesday in their next fixture. Germany also lost to Italy in their opening game 92-82.

France shocks Team USA

Later on, France the world’s No.7 ranked team mounted a tremendous comeback in the fourth quarter led by Evan Fournier (27 points) and Rudy Gobert (14 points, 9 rebounds) to upset the 15-time gold medallists and defending Olympic champions 83-76!

The United States will have an opportunity to rebound against the Islamic Republic of Iran on Wednesday (28 July), while France will play the Czech Republic (who beat Iran 84-78) on the same date.

They’ll need two wins to guarantee qualification, but a win and a loss may also put them in the knockout round if other results go their way.

France, led by Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert, finished third at the 2019 FIBA World Cup, but last won an Olympic medal in the men’s basketball at Sydney 2000 (silver).

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