France beats Mali in the World Cup

Victory over Mali (74-59), France achieved its second victory in this World Championship played in Australia. Facing a team beaten by 23 points by Japan and 60 by the Australians, the French team has been stuttering their basketball for a long time, showing in particular new difficulties in attack.

A slow start but a brutal awakening

The start of the match was very slow for Les Bleues, who started with the same bases as in their unsuccessful match against Canada two days before. Most concerning: that continued inability to secure defensive rebounds. In the first quarter, the Malians grabbed 8 offensive rebounds (16 in the game) and took advantage of some defensive generosity to take the lead after ten minutes (17-21, 10th). Everything except what is expected.

The second act was much more satisfying. The Habs, led first by Alexia Chartereau (her 12 points scored by her before the break), took a momentary lead (26-23, 14th) before conceding 6-0 (26-29, 16th). The action of Iliana Rupert and a renewed aggressiveness, both in defense and attack, allowed France to finish the first half with a 14-3 in their favor, and thus return to the locker room with a 10-point advantage (42 -32, 20) .

A second period without history

Back on the court, Mali rallied from six points thanks to two game-winning shots in a row (49-43, 27th), led by an unstoppable Sika Kone (18 points, 18 rebounds), but the Bleues quickly went 8-0. to finish the third quarter without trembling (57-46, 30th).

Without allowing the Malians to get back to under eight points in the last ten minutes, the French have never really cared. But Gabby Williams, still essential on Saturday (14 points, +25 for the Blues when he was on the court) will not always be able to make the difference alone in attack. Not very reassuring before facing Japan on Monday.

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