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The Senegalese Mouhammad Faye tries to recover the ball against Lithuania at the World Cup in China on 1 September. REUTERS / Kim Kyung-Hoon

The French men's basketball team started the World Cup in China with a win over Germany (78-74) on Sunday (September 1st). On the other hand, like the other African teams the day before, Senegal was no match against Lithuania (101-47).

Led by an excellent Evan Fournier (26 points, 10 rebounds), the French team was scared but got a valuable victory against Germany in Shenzhen, during the first day (78-74). Beaten by the same Germans in the round of 16 of Euro 2017, the "Blues" had their revenge with a first period of one way (36-20).

After 24 points in the 26th minute, Germany then took advantage of the changes made by the French coach Vincent Collet to get closer to the "Blues" late in the game, without ever succeeding in picking up the score.

The essential is thus assured for the band to Rudy Gobert who has just removed his main rival of Pool G, before facing Jordan and the Dominican Republic. A success will be enough to see the second round of this World Cup.

Frenchman Evan Fournier, Germany's leading scorer at the World Cup in China, on 1 September. REUTERS / Athit Perawongmetha

Senegal did not make an illusion

In the face of Lithuania, semi-finalist of the last World Cup, there was no match at the Dongguan Basketball Center (101-47). The "Lions" , without their players playing in the NBA, Tacko Fall (Boston) and Gorgui Dieng (Minnesota), were already led by 17 points after the first quarter time (27-10). The Lithuanians followed and won the biggest victory of this first day of the World Cup.

Too clumsy (4% success at 3 points, 28.6% in total), the team of Senegal does not count any player with more than 8 points in this meeting. The men of Moustapha Gaye (named just a month before the World Cup) are very badly embarked in this group H. If they want to hope to qualify for the second round, they will win Tuesday, September 3 against the Australians, winners of Canada this Sunday and the United States in a friendly match on August 24th.

No feat for other African teams

Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Tunisia and Angola failed to surprise opponents a priori stronger, this Saturday, August 31.

In group A, against Chinese at home, the "Elephants" , little pups of the competition, led after the first quarter time (16-14) before exploding in the second half (70-55). In the B, Nigeria cracked in the last quarter against Russia (82-77) despite the good performance of Josh Okogie who finished better scorer of the match with 18 points.

In Pool C, the Tunisian African champions have not done much against the Spaniards, bronze medalists at the 2016 Olympic Games (101-62). Finally, in Group D, Angola also fell sharply against another title contender, Serbia's Vice World Champion (105-59).

The program of the 2nd day of the World Cup

Monday, September 2nd:

Italy - Angola (7.30 UTC)
Venezuela - Ivory Coast (8h UTC)
Nigeria - Argentina (8.30 UTC)
Tunisia - Iran (8.30 UTC)

Tuesday, September 3rd:

Australia - Senegal (7:30 UTC)
Jordan - France (12.30 UTC)