Review of the quarter-final match of EuroBasket-2022 France – Italy

Today, September 14, the second pair of semi-finalists will be determined at EuroBasket 2022. In the first match of the game day, the teams of France and Italy met, and the wards of Vincent Collet were stronger than the opponent. By some miracle, they repeated the end of their match at the 1/8 playoff stage (up to the score) and in the last seconds they transferred the meeting to overtime, where they won a landslide victory.

In the 1/8 finals, France beat the demoralized Turkish team, which during the match allowed them to bounce back with “+16”. A few seconds before the end of regular time, Rudy Gobert saved his team and moved the meeting into overtime, having issued a spectacular dunk. After that, the wards of Vincent Collet snatched the minimum victory in the extra five-minute period – 87:86.

The worst defeat of Ataman!  Turkey misses victory over France twice after comeback with
The worst defeat of Ataman! Turkey misses victory over France twice after comeback with “+16”

But the Italians at the 1/8 stage unexpectedly beat one of the main favorites of the tournament – Serbia Nikola Jokic (94:86). The victory of the Italian team was a real sensation for everyone, including its head coach Gianmarco Pozzecco. The specialist, who earned a removal during the meeting, celebrated the triumph so violently that even Giannis Antetokounmpo, whom he accidentally met in the under-tribune room, “got” it. And after the match, Pozzecco gave his players his own credit card to celebrate their success in the first playoff match. In general, the happiness of the Italians knew no bounds, and they managed to maintain this mood for the game with France.

Wow!  Italy's coach put on a show from his retirement.  It helped to beat the powerful Serbia
Wow! Italy’s coach put on a show from his retirement. It helped to beat the powerful Serbia

“After the success over Serbia, the emotional state is still very good. Serbia and France have a lot in common, they are two great teams. The difference is that Serbia focused on their big ones that go to the perimeter and open the court, while France has more options, they are bigger and more athletic. We passed Jokic, and now Gobert is waiting for us. This team has a heart. We are ready and not afraid. Defence, speed and shooting is our way of going forward without thinking about the teams we go out on because otherwise we would get depressed,” said Pozzecco.

Gobert was in the starting five for the match with the Italians, as were Evan Fournier, Thierry Tarpei, Gershon Jabusele and Andrew Albisi. Pozzecco released Simone Fontecchio, Nicolo Melli, Marco Spissa, Stefano Tonuta and Achille Polonara.

Thanks to Evan Fournier, the beginning of the meeting was left for the French team – in five minutes, the defender shot nine of the team’s 11 points. Moreover, the Italians scored only four points during this time – the French defense worked much better. But towards the end of the segment, they began to lose. It’s not surprising when you consider that in the tournament, France allows an average of 17 turnovers per game. As a result, the Italian team managed to close the gap and give out a scoring segment, but by the end of the meeting, Vincent Collet’s wards scored several three-pointers and still kept the advantage – 27:20.

EuroBasket 2022.  France - Italy

EuroBasket 2022. France – Italy


In the second quarter, the French continued to lead in the long run. After two consecutive long-range hits from Thomas Ertel and Timothy Luwavu-Cabarro, the difference in the score reached 11 points. The Italians quickly responded, taking advantage of the opponent’s losses, and reduced the gap to “+4”, but after that France issued a 5:0 retaliatory spurt. And this is where the attacking potential of both teams dried up. Both teams scored only 11 points in the second quarter. The Italians smeared a lot, but the French continued to lose the ball. And if it weren’t for losses, which they had as many as 11 in the first half (the opponent had only five), Vincent Collet’s team would probably have led the score with an advantage of 15-20 points. But according to the results of the first 20 minutes, Italy still remained in the game – 38:31.

And although the beginning of the third quarter still remained with the French, closer to its end, the Italians suddenly changed. Firstly, the team managed to shut down Evan Fournier, without whom the French attack would come to a standstill, especially with Fall’s presence on the court. Secondly, when Rudy Gobert went to the bench, France was still without a sensible defense. Thirdly, Nicolo Melli finally “woke up”, which was then joined by Achille Polonara and Nico Mannion. As a result, Pozzecco’s wards managed to first reduce the difference in the score to a minimum, and then give a breakthrough 7:0. So, the Italians, who scored 31 points in a quarter, took the lead – 56:62.

But the French team was clearly not going to give up the victory so easily. Italy quickly lost the advantage, missing a few three-pointers, and then Vincent Collet’s wards completely seized the initiative, giving a 9:2 breakthrough. Interestingly, the situation that happened at the end of their match with Turkey was repeated almost one to one. In the last minute, Simone Fontecchio missed twice from the line, after which Gobert rebounded in attack and passed to Ertel. He successfully implemented a lay-up and made the score 77:77. With exactly the same ended and regular time in the match France – Turkey. For the second time in a row, the French managed to escape in the very ending, and the meeting went into overtime.

EuroBasket 2022.  France - Italy

EuroBasket 2022. France – Italy


And the only overtime, as in the match with Turkey, was left for the French team. Gobert and Ertel simply crushed the opponent, and no matter how hard Melly and Spiss tried, the Italians failed to fight back. The result – the victory of France with a score of 93:85. Vincent Collet’s team advances to the semi-finals of the tournament.

European Championship 2022 (m). 1/4 finals

14 September 2022, Wednesday. 18:15 Moscow time

France: Ertel – 20, Gobert – 19, Fournier – 17, Yabusele – 15, Luwavu-Cabarro – 13, Tarpey – 8, Fall – 1, Albisi, M’baye, maledon, Okobo, Poirier

Italy: Spissu – 21, Fontecchio – 21, Datome – 12, Mellie – 10, Polonara – 9, Mannion – 4, Ricci – 4, Drowning – 4, Baldasso, Biliga, Payola, tessitori

Simone Fontecchio was the man of the match with 21 points, five rebounds and two assists. Marco Spiss also has 21 points, three rebounds and two assists. Thomas Ertel led France with 20 points and seven assists. Rudy Gobert has another double-double with 19 points and 13 rebounds.

In the semi-final match, the French will fight the winner of the Slovenia-Poland pair. This match will also take place today, September 14th. The meeting starts at 21:30 Moscow time.

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