Bosnia and Herzegovina shocks France after double overtime thriller in FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 European Qualifiers

Bosnia and Herzegovina rode a rollercoaster of emotions and prevailed in a 96-90 double overtime thriller over France in the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 European Qualifiers.

FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 European Qualifiers

In a showdown of teams who will face off in the Group Phase of the FIBA EuroBasket 2022, France fell behind by 18 points in the first quarter but put together a 30-point swing to lead by 12 points midway through the third quarter.

Bosnia and Herzegovina bounced back, finished the third quarter on a 20-0 run, and were up by as many as eight points. However, France rallied late and tied the game to force overtime with a dunk from Evan Fournier.

The French survived trailing by as many as five points in the first overtime, with Rudy Gobert dunking home an offensive rebound with 30 seconds left to force a second extra session.

With Bosnia and Herzegovina’s big man, Jusuf Nurkic, fouled out, the rest of the team stepped up in the second overtime to get the win after 50 minutes. Nurkic led the way though with 21 points, nine rebounds, and four assists, John Roberson scored 18 points, and Dzanan Musa collected 17 points, six rebounds, and five assists.

Fournier led France with 24 points, with Guerschon Yabusele picking up 16 points and Gobert adding 10 points and 14 rebounds before he was banished to the bench early.

Turning point: The game was full of highs and lows for both teams, and massive momentum shifts with the game going to double overtime. In the second overtime, with Bosnia and Herzegovina ahead 91-90, Kenan Kamanjas put back a Roberson missed a three-pointer and then came back at the other end to block Vincent Poirier. Aleksandar Lazic finished off the game with a three-pointer with 23 seconds left.

Game hero: It’s nearly impossible to pick just one hero for Bosnia and Herzegovina. Nurkic carried them for large parts of the game, while Musa was also outstanding. But Kamenjas came up with the big plays when it mattered most and finished with an impressive all-around stat line of 9 points, six rebounds, three assists, three steals, and two blocks.

Stats don’t lie: Bosnia and Herzegovina forced 27 turnovers, and the French converted just 46.3 percent on two-pointers. Bosnia and Herzegovina also had a 58-34 advantage of points in the paint.

Bottom line: Bosnia and Herzegovina kept their chances of reaching the World Cup alive as they improved to 4-4 in Group K, leaving more hope for the final two windows after losing the first game of this window 88-69 at Montenegro. France still sits in a strong position at 6-2 in the group.

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