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    Sun, Sep 15

    Spain survives gritty Aussie stand in 2OT thriller, reaches World Cup final

    2 days ago
    PHOTO: Fiba.basketball

    SPAIN turned to Sergio Llull in the second overtime to turn back a tenacious Australia side, 95-88, on Friday night and reach the final of the 2019 Fiba World Cup at the Beijing Wukesong Sports Center.

    Llull hit the three-pointer to open the second extra period that put Spain in the lead for good, 85-82, then after a Marc Gasol alley-oop basket added another trey for good measure to leave Australia in a tight spot, 90-82, with 2:06 left.

    The 6-4 guard of Real Madrid came off the bench to finish with 17 points as Spain made it back to the final of this tournament it won in 2006. Gasol and Co. will face the winner of the other semifinal between France and Argentina.

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    Gasol led Spain with 33 points on 11-of-19 shooting to go with six rebounds and four assists while starting guard Ricky Rubio added 19 points, 12 assists and seven rebounds. Victor Claver added nine points.

    Patty Mills scored 32 to lead Australia, which was relegated to the battle for third place. The Boomers are 0-4 in third-place games in the Olympics and had never reached the semifinals of the World Cup.

    Spain trailed by as many as 11 piints but surged in the fourth quarter and took the lead 71-70 when Gasol hit two free throws with 8.7 seconds to play in regulation.

    Mills had two free throws to win the game with 4.8 seconds to play, but he missed the second after making the first to send the game into overtime at 71-71.

    Both teams had chances to win in regulation and in the first overtime, which ended 80-80. With reports from AP

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    PHOTO: Fiba.basketball
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