FIBA World Cup

HIGHLIGHTS: FIBA World Cup 2023 quarterfinals – September 6 games

JR Isaga

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HIGHLIGHTS: FIBA World Cup 2023 quarterfinals – September 6 games

FIBA/Rappler

NBA standouts Luka Doncic, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, RJ Barrett, and Dennis Schroder all see FIBA World Cup action in Manila for the first time as the Mall of Asia Arena rolls the welcome mat for its highly anticipated new quarterfinalist arrivals

MANILA, Philippines – The Mall of Asia Arena rolls the welcome mat one last time for new arrivals in the 2023 FIBA World Cup.

On Wednesday, September 6, the star-studded victors of the Okinawa, Japan and Jakarta, Indonesia group phases clash for the first time in Philippine soil, with many more NBA stars set to thrill Filipino and foreign fans alike.

Canada vs Slovenia

Canada claimed the last semifinal spot in the FIBA World Cup after turning back Luka Doncic and Slovenia, 100-89, in their knockout quarterfinal battle.

The Canadians banked on huge third-quarter turnaround, unleashing a 19-5 run behind NBA players Shai Gilgeous Alexander and RJ Barrett for a 69-55 spread after a 50-50 deadlock at the half. 

Gilgeous Alexander paced Canada with a double-double of 31 points and 10 rebounds, while Barrett posted 14 points and 9 boards.

Doncic posted 24 points, 4 rebounds, and 5 assists before the Slovenian NBA star got ejected late in the fourth quarter for incurring his second technical foul.

Canada battles Serbia in the final four, while USA and Germany clash in the other semifinal pairing.

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Preview

In one of the most-anticipated showdowns in the World Cup so far, especially in the Philippines, NBA-laden Canada and world No. 7 Slovenia meet in a finals-worthy tiff at 8:30 pm.

Heavily carried by NBA superstar Luka Doncic, Slovenia will try to show it is much more than a one-man team ahead of a semifinal berth, as the likes of Mike Tobey and former NBA player Zoran Dragic aim to show their worth to Filipino fans not yet familiar with their games.

Meanwhile, Canada brings a different NBA flavor to eager audiences in Manila only used to seeing mighty USA so far. All-Star Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, athletic swingman RJ Barrett, and streaky agitator Dillon Brooks are just some of the world-class Canadian talent on board ready to go for gold.

Germany vs Latvia

Germany clawed its way to the semifinals as feisty Latvia fought until the final second in an 81-79 decision.

The Germans pulled away from the tight affair, 79-69, with less than three minutes left, only to witness the Latvians storm back again within a bucket, 81-79, in a run capped by an Arturs Zagars layup.

Latvia, a World Cup debutant, even had a chance to steal it but Davis Bertans missed a potential game-winning triple at the buzzer.

Franz Wagner led the Germans with 16 points and 8 rebounds as fellow NBA player Dennis Schroder struggled, missing all eight of his three-point attempts before finishing with 9 points.

Zagars topscored for Latvia with 24 points, half coming from beyond the arc, while Bertans added 20 points, 18 from three-point range.

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Preview

World No. 29 Latvia – the lowest-ranked team remaining in World Cup contention – comes in still as one of the most dangerous as it turns its giant-killing intentions to No. 11 Germany at 4:45 pm.

Despite not having NBA All-Star Kristaps Porzingis, Latvian leaders Davis Bertans and Rodions Kurucs nonetheless added powerhouses France and Spain to their group phase kill count, and have shown no signs of stopping ahead of their encounter with another title contender.

Germany, bannered by NBA players Dennis Schroder, Isaac Bonga, and the Wagner brothers Moritz and Franz, will try to do what other stronger teams haven’t, and strike a cold midnight hand on Latvia’s Cinderella run for good.

Please refresh this page for live updates. – Rappler.com

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