Basketball World Cup: Germany is subject to France - Sport
Bitter disappointing start in China: The German basketball players to top star Dennis Schröder have lost in the World Cup the so important opening match against France after a disaster start. In Shenzhen, the ambitious team of national coach Henrik Rödl had beaten the world ranking third place with 74:78 (20:36) and could not meet the high expectation before the eyes of icon Dirk Nowitzki. The pressure is already high.
Topscorer against France was bright spot Johannes Voigtmann with 25 points, Schröder scored 23 points. In the long-racking defending world ranking third, failed in the European Championship knockout round at the German team in 2017, Evan Fournier (26) was the best bowler in the well-stocked Bay Sports Center, which holds around 13,000 spectators. The selection of the German Basketball Federation (DBB) has already bad prospects to complete the preliminary round in first place. The match against the Dominican Republic follows on Tuesday, followed by Jordan on Thursday.
Due to the defeat, the DBB team has to win the two preliminary round matches in order to progress. Only then would a place be secured for an Olympic qualifying tournament. For the desired entry into the quarter-finals are now expected four consecutive victories. And in the second round chunks like Australia and Lithuania wait. "We are ready," said national coach Rödl at MagentaSport shortly before the tip-off against the physically strong French: "You almost have to play the perfect game to win."
What his first five with Schröder, Ismet Akpinar, Paul Zipser, Maxi Kleber and Daniel Theis initially showed in the first World Cup match after the Nowitzki era, was exactly the opposite. Germany got off to a devastating start. Schroeder, Kleber, Zipser and Theis shook hands in the face of super defender Rudy Gobert (Utah Jazz). And on the other side, the French made their attacks, especially with Fournier (Orlando Magic).
At the score of 0: 9 Rödl took the first break, Maodo Lo finally scored the first points after more than seven minutes in a threesome. With 4:16 it went into the first quarter break. Of 17 throws, 16 had missed their target. The last time was good against the French. At the European Championship 2017, the DBB team had the powerful opponent in Istanbul in the second round off (84:81), but in Shenzhen initially lacked in the second quarter completely the rhythm. "We have to play right now," said Rödl in the quick second time out - and suddenly put Schröder and Co. the switch. Under the own basket now the intensity was correct, in the front Voigtmann brought a lot of energy and points.
With a 13: 0 run, the German team shortened to 20:24. But then the thread broke completely again until the half-time siren. Above all, the German NBA professionals Theis and Kleber were on the offensive not a factor at all and remained even after the break initially at first pale. The residue increased to 20:40 (22). But Voigtmann shone now and Schröder fought courageously. At the score of 50:59 it went into the final section. In the shortened Germany quickly to a gap of six points, shortly before the end again on two counters - but it was not enough.