Germany’s basketball players pulled off a thunderous surprise at the World Cup by beating five-time world champions the United States in the semifinals. They beat the U.S. in Pasay, Philippines, 113-111, and play for World Cup gold for the first time on Sunday.
It’s the second time the U.S. hasn’t advanced to the World Cup finals. In 2019, the United States ranked seventh.
The teams with the largest number of NBA players did not differ much from each other for a long time and the differences were small. The USA led 60-59 at halftime.
Poison in the tail
Germany pulled away in the third quarter and opened the final ten minutes with a ten-point lead. The U.S. got within a point (108-107), but after 113-111 there was less than a blip on the clock and the Germans cheered.
Andreas Obst (24 points) and Franz Wagner (22 points) scored for Germany. American Anthony Edwards’ 23 points and 8 rebounds for the Minnesota Timberwolves proved not to be enough.
Germany meet Serbia on Sunday, who have reached their second World Cup final. The 2014 undefeated final was a 95-86 win over Canada on Friday in Pasay.
Serbia, a five-time world champion as part of Yugoslavia, faced a 10-13 deficit in the first period, but then opened a big gap with eleven points in a row.
The Serbians led 52-39 at halftime and Canada, who did not win a World Cup medal, never got closer than seven points after tea. Serbia shot better than Canada (62 vs. 48 percent). Atlanta Hawks player Bogdan Bogtanovic led the way with 23 points.
With Svetislav Besic now 74, Germany will meet an old acquaintance in Sunday’s final. Serbia’s current national coach led the Germans to the European title in their home country in 1993.
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