France beat Mali to shut in on quarters



Gabby Williams produced a stellar all-round efficiency Sunday as France moved nearer to a quarter-final berth on the girls’s basketball World Cup with a 74-59 victory over Mali in Sydney.

France started as sturdy favourites, however began slowly and had been rattled by an aggressive Mali.

WNBA participant Williams scored 14 factors, with seven rebounds and 6 assists and assist from Alexia Chartereau’s 12 factors as France took their win-loss report to 2-1 within the powerful Pool B.

France did not recapture the shape proven of their gorgeous day one upset over hosts Australia, however regrouped after crashing to Canada on Friday.

“It was a difficult game. Our rebounding was really, really weak,” stated France coach Jean-Aime Toupane.

“We need to improve our physicality over the next two games.”

Winless Mali had been uncompetitive towards Japan and hosts Australia, notably struggling offensively, however 20-year-old energy ahead Sika Kone (18 factors, 18 rebounds) dominated across the basket to hassle France.

“Our defence was good but we made mistakes (offensively) and France took advantage,” stated Kone, who was chosen by New York Liberty within the WNBA Draft earlier this 12 months.

Mali’s physicality spurred them to a stunning 21-17 lead after the primary quarter.

A sizzling taking pictures Chartereau refocused France, who turned the tide with higher ball motion to take a 42-32 benefit into half-time.

France threatened to drag away within the third quarter however could not shake a gritty Mali, who produced their finest efficiency of the occasion to this point.

Mali sensed a significant upset once they reduce France’s result in 65-57 halfway by means of the ultimate quarter earlier than Sarah Michel’s three-pointer in the correct nook snuffed out the problem.

The high 4 groups from every of the 2 teams progress to the quarter-finals.

Later Australia and Serbia will conflict with each on the lookout for a second victory in Pool B and unbeaten Canada can guide a quarter-final berth with a win over Asian champions and final 12 months’s Olympic silver medallists Japan.