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Fauthoux ready to deliver home glory for France in Final showdown
BOURGES (FIBA U16 Women's European Championship 2017) - France captain Marine Fauthoux is out to give the locals the silverware they crave on the last day of the FIBA U16 Women's European Championship 2017.
Fauthoux, whose father Frédéric played for the likes of the famed French side Pau-Orthez during his professional career, helped France make a return to the title game for the first time since 2007. Her 17 points were vital in the tournament hosts' 74-57 Semi-Final win against Italy on Friday, which has set up a mouth-watering climax to the competition against Hungary
"It's awesome and what we've done is great and we were already thinking about what we needed to do right away," she said. "We had a difficult preparation for the tournament with injuries, so after all we've gone through to reach the Final, it feels just great."
"Italy were very physical in the Semi-Finals and we weren't ready for this in the first-half, but we managed their physicality better in the second-half. It was a team effort and it's the team who won. We’re always 5 players on the court - defending hard and playing hard."
Meanwhile, France head coach Arnaud Guppillotte is clear about where his team has an edge whenever they are on the court - namely athleticism and the stellar play of what many considering to be an MVP in waiting - Iliana Rupert.
"Our difference-maker is our athleticism and we know that whenever Rupert is not on the floor for us, the game gets tougher," he explained. "We are lucky to have this very smart and talented big player, who always understands very well what has to be done."
As for Hungary, they are ready to take to the floor searching for gold for the first time since 1976 at the inaugural edition of the event.