The Belgians, 21-18 winners of Austria on the Groenplaats in Antwerp on Thursday evening, finished first in Pool D and are directly qualified for the quarter-finals scheduled for Saturday. After successes against Slovenia (21-16) and Egypt (21-12) on Tuesday, Belgium (FIBA 4) had started their day perfectly on Thursday by winning 20-18 against the United States (FIBA 5 ), defending champions, in overtime.
Against Austria (FIBA 13), Nick Celis, Thibaut Vervoort, Maxime Depuydt and Bryan De Valck had to work in the last 2 minutes to make the difference. The score indicated 14-15 for the Austrians when Vervoort gave the Lions the advantage with a shot from distance (16-15) before offering the victory with another shot from behind the arc (21-18). Vervoort and De Valck finished the game with 7 points.
In quarters, the Lions will play Saturday at 5:30 p.m. against the winner of the duel between the 2nd in group B and the 3rd in group C.
The round of 16 and quarter-finals are scheduled for Saturday. Semi-finals and finals for bronze and gold will follow on Sunday. The ladies’ final will start at 8:55 p.m., the men’s at 9:30 p.m.
Among the women, the Cats punctuated their first day on Wednesday with two wins in two matches, against Mongolia (12-8) and Egypt (19-6). The Belgians are second in their group C and are now guaranteed to finish at least in 3rd place, synonymous with the round of 16. The Cats 3×3 will therefore only play one match on Friday at 5:30 p.m., against Poland (N.3), decisive for the first place in the group.