27 September, 2014
05 October
12 Lara SANDERS (Turkey); 11 Nevriye YILMAZ (Turkey)
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TURKEY 2014: Australia, Turkey, Spain and USA safely into Semi-Finals

ISTANBUL (FIBA World Championship for Women) - Australia, Turkey, Spain and defending champions USA have all punched their tickets for the Semi-Finals of the 2014 FIBA World Championship for Women in Istanbul.

Australia were the first nation to make the last four after overcoming Canada 63-52, thanks mainly to excellent defense and a number of fine shooting performances from Erin Phillips, Marianna Tolo and Leilani Mitchell.

The trio shared 39 points as the Opals cemented a fifth Semi-Final in six trips to the event and made it four wins from four games to remain unbeaten.

Australia will lock horns with the USA, who strolled to a 94-72 triumph against France after posting a scorching opening. They stormed into a 29-14 advantage after converting a mesmerising 92 percent of their shots during the opening period and stayed on top for the remainder of the contest. The twin towers of Brittney Griner and Tina Charles each finished hitting seven of their nine apiece in the paint as they combined for 32 points.

Sancho Lyttle continued her impressive work for Spain as they made light work of China in despatching them 71-55 off the back of an intense defensive effort during the first 20 minutes.

Spain were always in control after giving up just 17 points in the opening half and with an 18-point lead at the interval, they cruised to victory. Lyttle and Alba Torrens combined for 41 points as Spain capitalised on a glut of China turnovers.

The Spaniards will face Turkey, who were left breathing an immeasurable sigh of relief after sneaking past Serbia 62-61 in an absorbing encounter.

The hosts came back from a 10-point deficit to gain a roar of approval from the partisan home support, who had feared the worst with 15 minutes remaining.

Serbia almost ensured an extra twist in the tale with Nevena Jovanovic a perfect four of four from three-point range en-route to 16 points and making a huge shot with a handful of seconds remaining to give her team hope.

However, Lara Sanders proved to be a tower of strength inside for Turkey and completed a double-double of 14 points and 19 rebounds, as well as swatting five shots.

Just as critical was the cameo from Saziye Ivegin who made four scores from downtown, including one which was priceless in helping to get Turkey rolling after a worrying mid-game drought.