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Mon, 27 Jan 2020 07:31 GMT

Ricky Rubio Leads Spain to Make History in Basketball World Cup


7Dnews London

Tue, 10 Sep 2019 17:59 GMT

Spain will play Australia or the Czech Republic on September 12th in the Basketball World Cup semi-finals as Ricky Rubio made history in a 90-78 win over surprise-package Poland, AFP reported on Tuesday September 10th.

Rubio finished the match with 19 points, nine assists and five rebounds.

The Poles, back in the competition after a 52-year absence, had defied expectations to reach the last eight in China.

They were behind from the third minute against the Olympic bronze medallists on Tuesday in Shanghai, with the Phoenix Suns' Rubio making an electric start for Spain.

He had nine points in the first half and grabbed his 107th career World Cup assist to become the all-time leader, surpassing Pablo Prigioni of Argentina.

Juan Hernangomez of the Denver Nuggets surged to 14 points before the break as Spain, ranked number two in the world behind reigning champions the United States, threatened to run riot.

But Poland, who as underdogs had the Shanghai crowd shouting for them, recovered to trail by only five points at half-time and stay in touch.

However, with veteran centre Marc Gasol peerless, the Spanish always looked in control against the team coached by American Mike Taylor.

Thirty-four-year-old Gasol, who played a key role in the Toronto Raptors' historic run to the NBA crown, had 10 points and seven assists.

Earlier, strongly fancied Serbia were beaten 97-87 by Argentina to exit the tournament and leave Team USA as the favourites to retain their crown.