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Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Germany beat Serbia to win basketball world cup gold

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Germany beat Serbia 83-77 on Sunday to win the Basketball World Cup for the first time.

The Germans, who went unbeaten through the tournament and were appearing in their first final, broke clear of Serbia in the third quarter in Manila.

Serbia launched a furious fourth-quarter fightback but Germany managed to hold them off and put their name on the Naismith Trophy.

Dennis Schroder finished as Germany’s top scorer with 28 points, followed by Franz Wagner with 19.

Germany had beaten the United States in a dramatic semi-final.

Serbia, who were looking to win the title for the first time as an independent nation, lost small forward Ognjen Dobric to injury with less than three minutes of the game gone.

Dobric had to be carried off after a hard landing while attacking the basket.

He later reappeared at courtside, cycling on an exercise bike, but did not come back into the game.

The Serbian team was cheered on by a large group of travelling supporters but could not keep up with Germany in the second half.

Aleksa Avramovic finished as Serbia’s top scorer with 21 points, followed by Bogdan Bogdanovic with 17.

There was little to separate the two teams in a fiercely fought first half that ended 47-47.

That all changed in the third quarter when Germany outscored the Serbians 22-10.

Serbia came roaring back into the game in the fourth quarter, and cut the deficit to three points with less than a minute remaining.

UNBEATEN. Germany, who went unbeaten throughout the tournament, defeat Serbia Sunday to win its first Basketball World Cup gold, 83-77. FIBA

A lay-up from Schroder helped steady Germany’s nerves, and a missed three- point attempt from Avramovic ended Serbia’s hopes.

Serbia were playing without power forward Borisa Simanic, who underwent surgery to remove a kidney after getting injured earlier in the tournament.

They were also without superstar Nikola Jokic, who skipped the tournament to rest after leading the Denver Nuggets to the NBA title last season.

Earlier in the day, small forward Dillon Brooks said Canada would take “good momentum” into next year’s Paris Olympics after beating the United States to win bronze at the Basketball World Cup.

Canada won 127-118 in overtime in Manila to claim their first World Cup podium finish, denying the United States a medal for a second straight tournament.

Canada had already qualified for their first Olympics since 2000 by finishing as one of the two highest-placed teams from the Americas at the World Cup.

Brooks, who finished the game as Canada’s top scorer with 39 points, said the medal would fuel their ambitions when the new NBA season starts next month.

“It’s good momentum for us, we’ll hold on to that throughout the season,” he said.

“I’m going to see a lot of my team-mates during the season.

“Guys that weren’t here, that’s motivating to them as well, to want to join us, to get better, to make a run at the Olympics.”

Canada led for most of the game and built double-digit leads in both the first and third quarters.

They looked to have won the game until the United States’ Mikal Bridges hit a game-tying three-pointer with 0.2 sec remaining.

Canada quickly took control in overtime, with Brooks and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander in imperious form.

“This team was amazing, special, it’s the beginning of something that’s going to last for a long time,” said head coach Jordi Fernandez.

“All 12 guys came in and worked every day since August 1, they got at least 1 percent better every day. They built the identity that we just showed.”

Fernandez said Gilgeous-Alexander, who scored 31 points, was “to me the MVP of this World Cup.” AFP

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