impassable in defense, the Blues march on Poland and go to the final of the Euro


Winners of Poland this Friday, in Berlin, the French will face Germany or Spain in the final on Sunday, for the gain of the European coronation.

Never two without three. After 2011 and 2013, Les Bleus reached the EuroBasket final for the third time in their history. Led by a top Rudy Gobert, Gerschon Yabusele on fire offensively and an iron collective defense, they crushed Poland, surprise guest of the last four, this Friday in Berlin in the semi-finals of the European championship (95-54). This time, no miracle, no snatch victory, as it was in 8th against Turkey (87-86 ap) or in quarters, against Italy (93-85 AD). A show of force for the solid Olympic vice-champions, who will face Germany or Spain in the final on Sunday, to win a second European title after 2013.

22 points for Yabusele, 10 to the credit of Evan Fournier, 6 points, 6 rebounds and 3 blocks for Gobert. Note the impact of "defenders" Andrew Albicy (+/- to +24, 3 pts, 4 wt) and Terry Tarpey (+/- to +20, 8 pts, 4 rbs). Thomas Heurtel finished with 7 points and 6 assists after his recital against Italy on Wednesday in the previous round, in a match where the executives were able to rest at the end. And it's not luxury after the knife fights last Saturday and Wednesday... 9 points for AJ Slaughter on the Polish side, 7 from Mateusz Ponitka, muzzled after his triple-double against Slovenia (90-87).

The Blues immediately in tune

Tense start to the match on both sides, clumsiness, lost balls, tension in summary. In this little game, the Blues were doing better, with the address of Yabusele (8 pts in the 1st QT) and the aggressiveness of Fournier (13-6). Enough to lead 15-9 at the end of the first 10 minutes and further widen the gap thereafter, while the Poles came in nothing (22-9). Which Poles only remained alive thanks to the address of Slaughter, but France pressed where it hurt with their twin towers, Gobert and Poirier, with a monstrous counter from the first and a huge dunk from the second (27-14) . The blue defense let nothing pass around an impressive Gobert and the Poles were limited to 18 points, with up to +16 France, the gap at the break (32-16, then 34-18 MT).

The Blues got us used to air pockets in the third quarter. Not this time. We quickly understood that coach Collet's players had no intention of slowing down in this area and France was walking on overwhelmed Poles (59-30), with Ponitka under glass. Stroll… And +28 with 10 minutes to play (64-36 end of 3rd QT), with a triple signed Okobo to end the third quarter and another to start the fourth, with Gobert, Fournier and the executives quickly glued to the bench. No reason to take risks for the tricolor staff. There is a final to prepare (95-54 final score).

It will be Sunday around 8:30 p.m., with a second continental title in sight after that of 2013. It was in Slovenia, when the Parker generation was still in charge. The opposition will be much more raised, it is certain, with the Germany of Dennis Schröder at home or the eternal Spain, certainly reworked, opposite.



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