The Belgian Cats with Julie Vanloo, Ine Joris, Becky Massey and Laure Resimont started the World Cup 3×3 basketball with a victory against Mongolia. In a nervous match with many misses, it was 8-12 after ten minutes of toil on the Antwerp Groenplaats. Later tonight, the Cats will play against Egypt.
After a nervous start it was Becky Massey who took the 3X3 Cats in tow and propelled it to a 3-6 lead. Mongolia showed character but posed no real threat to the 3X3 Cats. Julie Vanloo with beautiful inserts, an energetic Ine Joris and a diligent Laure Resimont guided the Cats to a deserved 8-12 victory after 6-7 and 8-9.
“The crowd was fantastic,” said Massey, who was the Cats’ top scorer with six points. “Thank you for all the support. It’s just crazy to be able to play a World Cup in front of your own audience. At the beginning of the game, we had to get together for a while with the four of us. To say, let’s do this. There were nerves, of course, but rather healthy nerves. Then it’s great that you play in a team. We played pretty well. It’s extremely hot. Now recuperate and then recharge for tonight’s game against Egypt,” Massey added.
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The Belgian Lions already opened their World Cup on Tuesday with two smooth victories, successively against Slovenia and Egypt. On Thursday they will compete against the US and Austria.
Twenty countries compete for the world title for both men and women. These countries are divided into four groups of five. The group winner qualifies directly for the quarter-finals. From the quarter-finals there is a knockout formula. The second and third of each group first play the eighth finals. For the numbers four and five, the tournament ends after the group stage.