FIBA World Cup: Japan spoils Cape Verde’s comeback, punches ticket to Paris Olympics

Yuta Watanabe celebrates after Japan makes a return to the Olympics. FIBA
By Aaron Medina

MANILA--Japan earned a spot in the 2024 Olympics after Cape Verde fell short of a comeback in their final game in the FIBA World Cup and let the co-host escape with an 80-71 inside the Okinawa Arena on Saturday.

The Japanese team pushed the pace in the second quarter and finished the period with them leading, 50-37. 

Keisei Tominaga had a perfect first half after shooting 6/6 from the field which includes 4 three-pointers. 

However, Cape Verde fought back in the fourth quarter, after a 15-0 run to cut Japan’s lead to 3, 74-71. 

However, Joshua Hawkinson made back-to-back baskets scoring an and-one and a corner three, which were their only field goals in the fourth to seal the game, 80-71.

Hawkinson put up 29 points, 7 rebounds, and 4 assists to lead.

Japan’s win against Cape Verde put an end to China’s hopes of outright Olympic qualification.

China is battling Gilas Pilipinas as of writing at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City.

Follow the site on Facebook: Dugout Philippines