By Eurohoops team/ firstname.lastname@example.org
France defeated co-hosts Japan 88-70 in their penultimate FIBA World Cup 2023 warm-up friendly at Tokyo’s Ariake Arena on Thursday (17 August).
The French men were led by Rudy Gobert’s 16 points and nine rebounds. Evan Fournier – who made his 100th international appearance today – had 10 points and a pair of assists.
Nicolas Batum did not suit up for France. Neither did Japan’s Watanabe Yuta, who sat out after spraining his right ankle in Tuesday’s 75-65 win over Angola.
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Update on Mathias Lessort’s recovery
French head coach Vincent Collet explained that he wanted to spare Batum, who he had used the most so far, due to the ankle injury of Mathias Lessort.
The Panathinaikos center is still uncertain, but Collet gave an optimistic update on his status.
“We are awaiting the return of Mathias Lessort. I strongly hope so because I think he is really important for our team balance“, declared the French coach, as France24 reports, before adding: “He is training well and getting better and better.”
France takes on Australia on Sunday in Tokyo before relocating to Indonesia for men’s World Cup tournament play.