Who will play the Quarter-Finals? Who is out of contention?
OKINAWA (Japan) - Germany and Slovenia are the first to punch their tickets bound for the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 Quarter-Finals.
Two of the tournament's favorites did so after acing their respective tests to be the first teams to make it to the 8-team stage of the compeition.
Here is a brief look at what the qualified teams have done to reach the Quarter-Finals:
On Friday, September 1
Germany put one foot into the Final Phase door following a 100-73 win over Georgia, shooting 20 three-pointers to extend their unbeaten run to four. The 2022 EuroBasket bronze medalists have been living up to expectations so far, beginning with a clean 3-0 sweep of a loaded Group E.
Their Quarter-Finals entry was formalized after the Slovenia dealt Australia a 91-80 defeat in a rematch of the Tokyo Olympics bronze medal game. Like Germany, Luka Doncic and Co. went unbeaten in three games in Group F with an average winning margin of 17.0 points. Now, Germany and Slovenia will dispute the Group K top seed on Sunday in another clash between perennial EuroBasket contenders.
Lithuania trailed for most of the first half against Greece but turned it around after the break to squeak out a 92-67 win against their European rivals. Their fourth consecutive win at the World Cup saw them emerge with a ticket to the Quarter-Finals together with the other unbeaten team in the group, USA.
USA overcame their toughest challenge yet in Manila, holding off a ferocious Montenegro effort for an 85-73 victory in Group J to start the Second Round. Having defeated each of their opponents by double figures, the Americans improved their mark to 4-0, which they swiftly exchanged for a ticket to the Quarter-Finals following Lithuania's win over Greece in Friday's other game in the group.
Out of contention
Australia, Greece, Georgia and Montenegro are now out of contention for the World Cup title.