Star-powered Bosnia and Herzegovina overcomes France in double-OT

2022-08-27 20:33

Bosnia and Herzegovina upset France 96-90 in the 2023 FIBA World Cup Qualifiers behind spectacular performances from Jusuf Nurkic and Dzanan Musa.

Credit: FIBA

Jusuf Nurkic won the battle in the post against Rudy Gobert, while Dzanan Musa and John Roberson provided clutch performances to lead Bosnia and Herzegovina to an upset 96-90 (28-14, 10-32, 21-5, 17-25, 7-7, 13-7) win over France in the 2023 FIBA World Cup Qualifiers.

The Bosnians held their lead throughout the first half of the fourth quarter when Evan Fournier hit two three-pointers in a row to cut France's deficit down to just three (69-66). However, Nurkic hit a layup over Gobert to increase the lead to six with two minutes to go (74-68).

After Fournier two made free throws, Bosnia and Herzegovina held a two-point lead with 17 seconds to go. The home team inbounded the ball in its frontcourt when Nurkic made an ill-advised pass to Musa, Fournier stole the ball and finished the fast break with a game-tying dunk. The teams had to go to overtime.

Player of the Game
Jusuf  Nurkic
Jusuf Nurkic
Points 21
Accuracy 9-16
Rebounds 9
Assists 4

In a nerve battle, Bosnia and Herzegovina started the extra period better. John Roberson hit a fast break three-pointer, Nurkic won the battle against Gobert once again, and the home squad captured a small five-point lead (81-76).

With teams separated by two points (83-81), Fournier missed a driving layup that ended in a Rudy Gobert putback dunk to tie the game (83-83). Aleksandar Lazic missed a tough three-pointer, and France had possession to win the game. When it looked like Evan Fournier had an easy path to a game-winning layup, Rudy Gobert committed an offensive foul with two seconds to go, and the teams went to a second overtime.

With Nurkic having fouled out, the Bosnians had to overcome a more experienced and deeper French squad. However, clutch episodes by Lazic, Roberson, and Musa proved too much for the European basketball powerhouse. France did not manage to climb out of yet another deficit and was defeated for the second time in the Second Round.

In a beautiful game of runs, it was the home team that started the match on a better note. The Bosnians went on a 17-4 run to start the first quarter. France had no answers as Nurkic increased the lead to 14 (28-14) to finish the first 10 minutes.

The second quarter was France's territory though. With the score standing at 33-18, the away team went on a 15-0 run to even up the result. Terry Tarpey scored a layup after an offensive rebound to finish the first half with France holding an 8-point lead (46-38).

Led by an energized crowd, Bosnia and Herzegovina came out firing in the second half. With France leading 51-42, the home team went on a 17-0 run to finish the quarter with a lead in its pocket (59-51).

Bosnia and Herzegovina: Jusuf Nurkic 21 (8/12 2PT, 1/4 3PT, 2/5 FT, 9 REB, 4 AST, 4 TO), John Roberson 18 (2/5 2PT, 4/9 3PT), Dzanan Musa 17 (6/14 2PT, 6 REB, 5 AST, 2 STL), Miralem Halilovic 12 (6/11 2PT, 7 REB).

France: Evan Fournier 24 (1/6 2PT, 6/13 3PT, 4/7 FT, 5 REB), Guerschon Yabusele 16 (2/6 2PT, 3/6 3PT, 7 REB), Thomas Huertel 11 (4/4 2PT, 1/6 3PT), Rudy Gobert 10 (2/7 2PT, 14 REB, 6 TO).

Clutch moments of the match (4Q, OT, 2OT):

Jusuf Nurkic's performance:

Full game highlights:


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