Japan flips Cape Verde’s comeback rally, confirms next year’s flight to Paris for Olympics


Photo: FIBA

OKINAWA, Japan — Japan cemented its place as the best team in Asia for the 2023 FIBA Basketball World Cup upon besting Cape Verde in their final classification game, 80-71, to fully confirm their ticket in next year’s Olympics this Saturday, Sept. 2.

The Akatsuki led by as many as 20, but a late sprint from the Blue Sharks temporarily turned the entire Okinawa Arena in anxiety with Betinho Gomes and Edy Taveres pulling Cape Verde trailing to just three, 74-71, with 1:12 on the clock.

But Joshua Hawkinson’s five-straight points including a dagger three with 20 seconds left completely closed the door for Cape Verde as Japan rejoiced at its soon entry to Paris next year.

Hawkinson was the man of the night for Japan with 29 huge points, while Keisei Tominaga made it rain via 22 points with six massive treys.

For the second time to follow up their appearance in Tokyo last 2021, Japan will represent Asia in the 2024 Olympic Basketball Games – holding a 3-2 Group Phase record that outlasts continental rivals in China and the Philippines.

Cape Verde will meanwhile head home with a 1-4 World Cup record.

Source link


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here