The most exciting battle: France – Lithuania!

France-Lithuania the battle for supremacy in Group K, both teams having 9-2 and being qualified for the 2023 World Cup. The match will take place on February 26 in Arena Loire, Trelaze.

Vincent Collet did an excellent job keeping France at an elite level and qualifying for FIBA World Cup. France enter this match motivated for the 1st place, after a victory in the Czech Republic following another amazing performance from the youngster Victor Wembanyama with 22 points and 17 rebounds. Collet has selected on his roster six players born in the new millennium: Juhann Begarin (born in 2002), Hugo Benitez (2001), Malcolm Cazalon (2001), Ismael Kamagate (2001) , Yoan Makoundou (2000) and Victor Wembanyama (2004). Only three players have more than 10 national team appearances in Andrew Albicy, Paul Lacombe and Terry Tarpey. Everyone will be motivated to give everything to grab a place in the World Cup alongside players like Evan Fournier, Nando de Colo, Nicolas Batum, Rudy Gobert or Guerschon Yabusele.

A few days ago, Lithuania had an impressive victory at home in the last FIBA ​​World Cup qualifying match against Hungary. All 12 players in the Lithuanian national team scored points. For Arn Beručka, Mantas Rubštavičius and Gabriel Maldūnas, this was their debut match with the Lithuanian national team. The captain Mindaugas Kuzminskas was the best player for Lithuania with 14 points, 5 rebs and 2 ast in only 19 minutes. Like the other national teams, they can not rely on the core of important players from the Euroleague and NBA (Sabonis, Valanciunas), but they will have some experienced players on the field: Mindaugas Kuzminskas, Martin Geben, Eimantas Bendžius, Donatas Tarolis and Margiris Normantas.

The match in Lithuania was dominated by France and won by 25 points, with Wembanyama scoring 20 points and having 9 rebounds. Will we see again a demonstration of strength from him and the young French team, or will Lithuania find the weapons to respond to the measure, especially through the experience of Kuzminskas?

Valentin Petruta

Photo credit: FIBA