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FIBA World Cup updates 03/9/14

Check the latest updates on the fourth round of the World Cup in Spain. Some teams are facing elimination and they will try to stay alive until tomorrow, when the final round will be played.

Group A

Egypt said goodbye to the World Cup with another defeat, this time against Iran by 73-88. Still, Egyptians had a chance, arriving to the final quarter only 8 points behind. But Iran proved to be a good time, once again. Nikkhah Bahrami and Haddadi combined to score 47 points. Maybe if they had been lucky in the draw, they could have qualified for the next round, but things were tough for the Persian team in a group with Serbia, France, Brazil and Spain. Too much for them. Shousha scored 15 points for Egypt. Brazil beat Serbia 73-81 in a key game to decided the final standing in Group A. Barbosa played an impressive game for the first time in this World Cup, scoring 16 points, while Vieira performed as strong as usual with 21 points and 5 rebounds. The win came after a very bad last quarter of the Serbian squad, which managed to score only 9 points. They really need Nenad Krstic for the round of sixteen. Brazil showed great mental toughness and it will definitely help them during the key matches yet to come. Spain made things easier against a tough rival like France and won 88-64. They got a 10-point advantage in the first half, and they kept increasing the gap little by little during the second half. Five Spanish players scored in double digits while only Batum and Diot could barely reach 11 points each.

Group B

Puerto Rico topped Philippines 73-77 in a thriller in the first game of the day in Seville. Philippines got a 14-point lead in the first quarter, but “boricuas” never gave up and managed to lead the score by the end of the third quarter. Blatche (who finished the match exhausted) led the Asian team once again with 25 points and 14 rebounds. Tenorio added 18 points. Barea was very alone during the whole game, scoring 30 points, but in the final quarter Sánchez and Huertas woke up to finish with 13 points each. The final quarter was a sample of how beautiful basketball can be, with both teams fighting to avoid elimination. But it was Puerto Rico who got the big prize in the end. Argentina did not let Senegal surprise them and destroyed the African team 46-81. Dieng tried to keep his team in the game, but a disastrous second half, in which they only managed to score 22 points, was too much for them. Argentina moved the ball really well, always finding the player with the best chance to score. Among them, Scola was the best with 22 points, supported by Herrmann with 11 points. Argentina also surpased Senegal under the rims, getting 12 more rebounds than the African side. Greece always controlled the match against Croatia. Once they got a 13-point advantage by the end of the first half, they managed the gap wisely, never allowing Croatia to be closer than 8 points. A very good defense on Tomic proved to be very important to succeed. Kaimakoglou, Bourousis and Papanikolau combined to score 41 points. Bogdanovic was very alone in Croatia in spite of his 20 points. The final score was 76-65.

Group C

New Zealand defeated Ukraine 73-61, setting fire in Group C. Veteran Kirk Penney led the All Blacks with 17 points, while Bartlett showed again his soft touch with 14 points. Pooh Jeter had a horrible day, hitting only 5 out of 16 shoots. Ukraine could not overcome this, but Kornienko tried his best with 15 points. With this win, all teams have still a chance to qualify tomorrow. Turkey had a tough game against Finland, which is definitely learning a lot in this World Cup. The Turkish side needed an overtime to defeat the “wolves” 77-73, playing a good second half to overcome a 14-point gap. Asik scored 22 points and grabbed 8 rebounds, while Koponen led the Finish squad with 17 points, 5 rebounds and 5 assists. USA had no mercy of Dominican Republic and won 71-106. The Caribbean team could barely resist the first half. NBA players did their job soon and fast, and then it was time for the showtime.

Group D

Mexico and Australia played another thriller. The American team needed the win to keep dreaming of advancing to the next stage, while Aussies want to lead the group. In spite of  the 14-point lead that Australia got in the third quarter, a big comeback by the Mexicans in the final quarter made things exciting, but the more experienced Australian team managed to control the game and keep the win. Aaron Baynes, with 21  points and 5 rebounds, was the best player on the court. Ayón led the Mexicans with 11 points and 9 rebounds. The final score was 62-70. Slovenia topped Angola 93-87 in an interesting game. The European side had to win the match in the final quarter, with Domen Lorbek and Goran Dragic as leaders with 17 and 14 points each. Fortes and Moreira combined for 41 points in the losing effort. Nevertheless, Angola will have a final chance against Australia tomorrow. Lithuania easily got ride of South Korea 79-49. They played with their rival during the third quarter to get a 24-point advantage which was too much for the Asian team. Lithuanians grabbed 13 offensive rebounds, and Juskevicius had a great day with 20 points. Motiejunas added 18 and 7 rebounds. Moon was the only player scoring in double digits for South Korea, with 15 points.

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