May 18, 2024

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France dominates New Zealand to finish unbeaten – FIBA ​​Women's Olympic Qualifiers China 2024

France dominates New Zealand to finish unbeaten – FIBA ​​Women's Olympic Qualifiers China 2024

XI'AN (China) – France were ruthless in dominating New Zealand 94-39 in the FIFA Women's Olympic Qualifiers 2024 in Xi'an.

France won the third match in a row.

They completely outplayed New Zealand on both ends of the court en route to sweeping WOQT at the Shaanxi Provincial Gymnasium. Gabby Williams led the charge with 21 points, and every French player who saw action scored at least 3 points and made at least one field goal. At the other end, the Tall Ferns got 10 points from Ezra McGoldrick.

Infection point: Behind Williams' strong start and relentless defensive pressure, France burst through the gates. They forced 9 Tall Ferns turnovers with 7 steals in the first quarter alone, and it helped Les Blues take a 28-9 lead. It proved to be an early knockout as coach Guy Malloy's side were unable to mount any serious comeback.

TCL Man of the Match: Gabby Williams imposed her presence early and often. He scored 13 of France's first 17 points as the Olympic contenders showed their best form. He finished with 21 points in addition to 3 rebounds, 3 steals, 2 assists and 1 block. Williams was the picture of talent, shooting 10 of 13 from the field.

The statistics don't lie: Throughout the tournament, France were known for their sublime ball movement, and here they maintained a stellar level of team play. Five French players finished with 3 or more assists and coach Jean-Aime Toubain's team totaled 23 assists against 4 turnovers. Sarah Michelle Powrie was their best playmaker tonight with 8 assists.

Conclusion: Before this tournament started, there was some uncertainty about how hard France would play, especially since they had already secured a place as hosts at the Olympics. Nevertheless, Les Bleus are in no doubt about the level of their game. They saw every match as an opportunity to make a statement, and that's exactly what they did. When the TCO smoke cleared, France was outscoring its opponents by an average of 45.0 points.

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They said: “We had a lot of injuries and brought a very young team into the tournament. I'm glad they took the opportunity to play against strong teams like France. The future.” – Guy Molloy, New Zealand head coach

“We came here with a goal to qualify for the Olympics. It's hard to come home without getting that ticket, but based on what the coach said, I think we got a lot of experience in this tournament. Now is the time. “Leadership and work for future tournaments.” – Tayla Dalton, New Zealand goalkeeper

“We're very happy to win the tournament even though we've already qualified for the Olympics, but the way we did it was what we expected. We came here to do a job, and the team did a great job tonight.” – Jean Aime Toupane, France coach

“We knew we were already qualified, but we came to work and showed everyone in Paris that we will be ready. We are happy that we did the work and can't wait to start the Olympic Games.” – Sarah Michel Boury, France goalkeeper