15 - 23
July 2023
Chloe Kitts - USA
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Player Power Rankings; Who's been lighting it up in Madrid?

MADRID (Spain) - As we head into the last few days of the FIBA U19 Women's Basketball World Cup 2023 in Madrid, it's time to update our pre-tournament Player Power Rankings.

Having initially produced two features showcasing those ballers occupying spots 20-11 and then also the much sought after 10-1 spots, we've settled on a 'Top 12' Power Rankings list.

You can also show your support for some of the players below in the MVP Fan Vote.

12. Frieda Buhner - Germany  (new entry)

One of only two players in the list who are not participating in the Quarter-Finals, Buhner has enjoyed an excellent tournament and the fact she has harvested a double-double in her four games of 15.3 points and 11.3 rebounds per game speaks volumes.

Her contributions took Germany to within one basket of making the top eight and her strength, poise, and extended shooting range have been eye-catching throughout.

11. Dominka Paurova - Czech Republic (+4) 

A deserved climb in the player power rankings comes for Paurova who has further enhanced her reputation with some fine displays for a Czech team who can cause any opponent plenty of headaches. She has averaged 18.3 points, 5.3 rebounds, 2.8 assists, and 2.3 steals per game, perhaps most impressively sitting in the top five in the competition for both scoring and efficiency - which is superb at 20.3.

The experience of playing with the senior team at the FIBA Women's EuroBasket 2023 has given her the impetus to be a true leader.

10. Jana Elalfy - Egypt (+8) 

The only player other than Buhner not stepping out in the top eight on these last days, just about everything that Elalfy has done in Madrid is praiseworthy. You have to take into account that she has been the subject of intense defensive attention, with regular double teaming, and yet somehow, she is still second in the tournament for efficiency at 21.8 which is mind-blowing.

Her actual production of 23.0 points and 9.8 rebounds is great, but even more so taking into account how smart the forward has been in her play. Best scorer of the competition for the moment.

9.  Elena Buenavida - Spain (+2) 

At face value, the numbers of Buenavida don't look massively impressive since she has averaged only 8.0 points per game, but her position in the top 12 is down to her leadership. She is the baller who makes an ambitious Spain tick and her 6.8 assists per outing highlight how through her pulling of the strings, her country can get onto the podium.

Nobody has passed the rock more in the competition and built for the big occasion, you sense there is more to come from the guard.

8. Joyce Edwards - USA  (new entry)

It was always a difficult task with so much talent and options to pick out which USA players might rise up and lead, so it's a new entry with Edwards who was one of the ballers who answered the call most loudly. She currently leads the competition in field goal percentage having hit more than 62 percent of her shots en route to 13.3 points per game.

That also makes her the leading scorer for the defending champions and if she continues to be this accurate, they will only look for her even more down the tournament stretch.

7. Cassandre Prosper - Canada (+2) 

The senior experience at the FIBA Women's AmeriCup 2023 looks to have given Prosper an added bounce in her step, on top of the talent everyone already knew she had. Her work for Canada has helped them to build a four-game winning streak, with Prosper the leading scorer after netting 16.0 points per game.

She has also been a factor at the defensive end for her country too, coming up with 2.3 blocks per game and that is the second-best by any player in the competition. 

6. Leila Lacan - France  (-1)

It's a very slight drop of one place in the rankings for Lacan, but that is more about accommodating a new entry above her. She has proven herself to be the glue that has held France together at times as they squeezed their way into the Quarter-Finals.

Leading her team in points with 15.0 per outing, it has more been the overall presence of her on the court which has been impressive. Her work and 3.3 steals per game typify her maturity and all-around influence. 

5. Iyana Martin Carrion - Spain (+3) 

Right now, it looks like Martin Carrion is the baller that can for Spain. Nominated as the MVP of Group A, she has really begun to heat up and looks ready to make an even bigger splash in the last few days. Topping Spain's efficiency chart. their leading scorer - although with a modest 13.0 points per game, it is her usual shot selection that stands out above almost any other player in Madrid.

She has shot 73 percent which is so typical because she rarely tries to force it and is always aware of better options around her. 

4. Chloe Kitts - USA (new entry)

Very much the USA's leading MVP candidate as the medal games get closer, Kitts has really come alive in the competition and stood out with her skills and application for the holders. Her tournament near double-double of 12.0 points and 9.5 rebounds per game finds her in the top five overall for efficiency which is now approaching 20.

Her size and length means she is also a real handful for her opponents to guard her. Is there more to come and will she be crowned MVP if USA go all the way as many expect?

3. Juste Jocyte - Lithuania  (-1)

The drop of one place reflects Fournier stepping up, although it's understandable some might question a leading slot in the rankings as her statistics are not mind-blowing at 12.0 points, 6.3 rebounds, and 4.5 assists per game. But factor all that defensive attention into the equation.

She could also try and take more shots and force matters, but has instead played smart, and been considerate of the team. The most intriguing question is if she has that one amazing display in her when she might just need to put the team on her back.

2. Toby Fournier - Canada (+1) 

From the first minute of the first game in Canada colors, Fournier has gone to work in the Spanish capital and it is exciting that she is one of the younger talents on display - having played at the U17 Women's World Cup last year. The leading rebounder in the tournament with 14.5 per game, she has also accumulated a double-double for her unbeaten team after scoring the same number of points per outing.

Third in the whole competition for efficiency and ready to possibly help Canada onto the podium, what's not to love? Now we need another dunk from her.

1. Maimouna Haidara - Mali (+19) 

Yes, Haidara has moved up 19 places. What an EPIC tournament from Mali's marquee baller. Some mind-boggling numbers show the magnificent job done at both ends of the court. Remember when she had a triple-double against Chinese Taipei and set the competition record for steals in a game?

From a staggering 26.3 performance efficiency valuation to a double-double of 18.0 points and 13.8 rebounds. She also leads the way in steals with an amazing 4.8 per game - as well as handing out 3.0 assists. Awesome.

*The player power rankings are entirely subjective and are in no way a true and accurate ranking system. All comments are purely those of the author for the entertainment of the fans.