Yuta Watanabe et al got certainty of going to Paris after his team beat Cape Verde with a score of 80-71 in the Group O classification match at Okinawa Arena Japan, Saturday.
Previously, Japan also beat Venezuela on Thursday (31 August) in Group O. In the first round group phase, Japan also scored a win over Finland.
“I think we showed the world what we can do. Now we’re on everyone’s radar, we’re on the map for the whole team. It’s a big step,” said Japan head coach Tom Hovasse.
In the match against Cape Verde, naturalized Japanese player Joshua Hawkinson recorded 29 points and 7 rebounds. Japan was also assisted by Keisei Tominaga who scored 22 points, and Yuki Kawamura 14 points.
The match against Cape Verde was full of tension. Where Japan, which was already 20 points ahead, was caught up with only three points left, namely 74-71 with 1 minute 12 seconds remaining.
However, Japanese big man, who is also a naturalized player, Joshua Hawkinson, saved his team from securing a ticket to the 2024 Olympics by scoring six points, three of which were scored from long-range shots.
Apart from Japan, countries that also received tickets to the Paris Olympics via the 2023 FIBA World Cup include South Sudan. Egypt and New Zealand have the opportunity to play in the Olympics, but must enter the Olympic Qualifying Tournament together with the teams that qualified for the Olympic Prequalification competition.
After Japan, the second best Asian team at the 2023 FIBA World Cup is Lebanon, which has won twice. The Philippines is in third place with only one win.
Source : Tempo.co