France see off Brazil to punch their ticket to Tokyo via Bourges
BOURGES (France) - France cemented their place at the Tokyo 2020 Women's Basketball Tournament after beating Brazil 89-72 to earn the first ticket from Bourges.
The hosts never trailed in the contest as they inflicted a second loss on Brazil with the remaining two spots from the tournament being decided on Sunday.
Turning Point: France pulled away with a 12-1 burst in the first quarter, but Brazil battled away and were back within four points at 46-42 in the third. A 14-4 close regained the upper-hand for France and they soon put the game beyond doubt in the final period.
Game Hero: Sandrine Gruda started on fire with 5 of 5 for 10 points in the first five minutes to fuel the French crowd. The 32-year-old finished with 26 points with just two misses from 14 attempts, whilst adding 8 rebounds in a trademark performance.
Stats Don't Lie: France were not wasteful inside with 48 points coming in the paint as they also enjoyed 64 percent success of their total 2-point field goals. Brazil were still at a respectable 55 percent but their struggles came from the perimeter after starting 1 of 17.
Bottom Line: France are in with a day to spare and the pressure is alleviated ahead of their final game against Puerto Rico. Brazil know they have a do-or-die clash with Australia in order to snatch one of the two remaining spots from Bourges.