Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

Tiebreaker Times

2016 Manila OQT

France wallop Turkey to reach OQT Final

And it’s down to just two squads!

The French men’s national basketball team, the Les Bleus, soundly defeated the 12 Tall Men of Turkey, 75-63, to set up a Manila OQT Final date with Canada Saturday evening at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.

Tom Huertel led the way for the French with 17 points, including two triples. Three other players from France scored in double-figures, with Nando de Colo scoring 13, big man Joffrey Lauvergne scoring 11, and Antoine Diot adding 10 markers.

“We showed our character just like two days ago. We won and it’s the most important thing,” Heurtel said after smoke had cleared.

With Nic Batum finally suiting up for the first time for France in this tournament, the Les Blues paraded an all-NBA starting five.

The Turks, though, were unfazed after seeing the lineup in starting on a 13-3 blitz. Despite a slow start highlighted by four early miscues, the veteran-laden French squad were able to rally, scoring 13 straight points – eight coming from Nando De Colo.

France played a smaller lineup in the second frame, which the Turks took advantage by pounding the ball inside. However, Thomas Heurtel was able to ignite France’s counter from the perimeter to help the French build a 31-25 advantage. The Group B leaders produced nine first-half assists that helped yield their biggest lead of the opening half, 9, on a De Colo layup.

Ali Muhammed’s initial three-ball to start the second half was responded to by ten straight points by France. In a blink of an eye, Boris Diaw and Joffrey Lauvergne combined for a blistering counter-punch that separated their team from Turkey, 47-33.

#ReadMore  Countdown to Manila OQT: Jalalon giving Gilas practice much-needed extra bodies

Just like in yesterday’s outing against New Zealand, the French bench that led the way for the team in the fourth quarter. Heurtel scored nine in the opening surge to lead his team to successive buckets and open an 11-3 blast in the final frame. Ender Arslan converted a four-point play on the other end to try and save his country’s Olympic hopes as Turkey melted the lead to ten, from as high as 18, after a basket by Semih Erden.

With 3:30 left, Heurtel stopped the bleeding with another basket. After an exchange of buckets, Birkan Batuk made a layup in transition to slice the deficit down to eight. Unfortunately, time was not on Turkey’s side, and Boris Diaw’s reinsertion helped France restore order en route to booking their seat in the OQT Final.

France made four more three-pointers against Turkey’s dismal 3-for-20 shooting from beyond the arc. While Turkey had more rebounds, 33-29, they also committed more turnovers, 16-13, and shot only 42 percent against France’s 52 percent clip from the field.

As for Turkey, Asik played his best game of the entire OQT with 19 points, five rebounds, on 8-for-11 shooting. Erden and Muhammad had 11 apiece.

France will face the 26th ranked Canada on Sunday, July 10 at 9:00pm

The Scores:

France (75) – Heurtel 17, De Colo 13, Lauvergne 11, Diot 10, Gelabale 5, Pietrus 4, Diaw 4, Batum 3, Parker 2, Moerman 2, Kahudi 0.

Turkey (63) – Asik 19, Erden 11, Muhammed 11, Osman 7, Batuk 5, Arslan 4, Korkmaz 3, Mahmutoglu 2, Guler 1, Geyik 0, Sipahi 0.

#ReadMore  Underdog Senegal overwhelmed by Filipino crowd support

Quarterscores: 18-16, 37-30, 53-43, 75-63

Written By

You May Also Like

2023 FIBA World Cup

Having fallen short of qualifying for the second stage of the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023, France embarked on their redemption journey in the...

2016 Manila OQT

As confetti rained on the SM Mall of Asia Arena prquet, the French national basketball team began celebrating its return to the Olympic stage...

2016 Manila OQT

Cory Joseph could have skipped the 2016 FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Manila, Philippines. Joseph played in the 2015 FIBA Americas Championship the summer...

2016 Manila OQT

French national team guard and recently-crowned MVP of the 2016 FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Manila, Philippines says he was overwhelmed by the Filipino...

2016 Manila OQT

Tony Parker given the rockstar treatment in Manila: — LVJ (@levijoshua) July 10, 2016 French national team key players Tony Parker and Nicolas...

2016 Manila OQT

France head coach got his wish to be in the same grouping as the US men’s national basketball team. Shortly after France’s dominant win...

2016 Manila OQT

Tony Parker gets his wish! The French men’s national basketball team, led by Parker, churned out an impressive 83-74 win over Canada to book...

2016 Manila OQT

Nic Batum on his first game in the Manila OQT, France’s bench, Edwin Jackson: — LVJ (@levijoshua) July 10, 2016 After skipping France’s...