Miguel Angel Moreno
Saitama, Jul 30 (EFE) .- The Asian teams surprise at Tokyo 2020. The United States had to put on the overalls to beat a tough Japanese team (86-69), and China defeated the world runner-up Australia (76- 74); while France beat Nigeria (87-62), and Belgium beat Puerto Rico (87-52).
Belgium is already classified to the quarterfinals and the United States has practically solved it with its two victories, since in an unlikely event of defeat on the last day it would be second or one of the best thirds; while Australia, a finalist in the last 2018 World Cup in Tenerife, is on the verge of elimination.
The stars and stripes had to work hard to beat Japan (86-69), which has become one of the upsets of the championship. The host team defends aggressively and has a sharp wrist, which helped them to defeat France on the first day, but against the Americans it was not as effective.
The eternal Olympic basketball champions – they have six consecutive golds and are looking for the seventh – had to cling to their interiors, with magnificent games by A’ja Wilson (20 points and 10 rebounds) and Brittney Griner (15 and 5) and with a spectacular Breanna Stewart entering from the perimeter, with 15 points, 13 rebounds and 6 assists to take the game 86-69.
If Japan pointed ways, China confirmed them by beating Australia by a misleading result (76-74), which does not reflect that the whole of the Asian giant dominated the match for most of the time, because the Australian ‘Opals’ barely approached the edge of the break (38-38) and in the final phase.
In the rest of the duel, the Chinese team, one of the most powerful in the inner game, governed the rebound (42-31) and to the power of its pivot Yueru Li (12 points and 7 rebounds) he added the success of the outside Siyu Wang (20 points and 5 assists) and Meng Li (11 and 7), despite the 21 turnovers they committed.
Australia is seen with zero victories and very few options to go to the quarterfinals, since it is the only third that has not yet won and has a differential between points scored and received of -17 while the rest of its opponents, France and Canada, are in positive figures.
France, European runners-up, redeemed themselves from their stumble in the premiere against Japan by defeating by 25 (87-62) a Nigeria that had left a good image when they premiered against the United States, but that against the finery barely resisted until the break (44 -27).
The French team offered a choral image, with up to five players with more than ten points, such as Sandrine Gruda (14 and 9 rebounds), Marine Johannes (13, 4 and 4 assists), Endene Miyem (14 and 5), Gabby Williams ( 13 and 9) and Alix Duchet (13 and 5 assists) and dominated the rebound with 45 sacks for 32 of the Africans.
More facilities had Belgium to add their second win against Puerto Rico. After winning a battle against Australia, the Europeans easily beat the Central Americans in the morning shift, who live in Tokyo 2020 the first Olympic experience in their history (87-52).
Asserting its very fast game in transition and with Emma Meesseman as a beacon in the paint who scored a ‘double-double’ of 26 points and 15 rebounds, Belgium broke the game in the second quarter reaching the break with 43-24, and then He continued to increase his advantage in case he has any conflict that has to be decided by the difference in points scored and received. His is 122.
For Puerto Rico, everything lived in these Games is a positive experience that raises its pace of competition. In this case, she was more persistent than in her debut against China with forward Jazmon Gwathmey as the most outstanding player with 20 points and 5 rebounds. They will close their Olympic experience against Australia, in need of winning.
Tomorrow, Saturday, will be a day of rest for the women’s basketball tournament at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, as the last day of the men’s tournament will start.
Results of the day:
– B Group:
United States 86 – 69 Japan
France 87 – 62 Nigeria
– Group C:
Belgium 87 – 52 Puerto Rico
China 76 – 74 Australia
(c) EFE Agency