The women’s 5th – 6th play off saw World Champions Canada take on China at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games.
After Canada played their way to a 7-2 lead, China hit back to within one point (10-11) before the Canadian side pushed forwards once again to close out the first quarter by 17-12.
Canada continued to edge ahead at the start of the second, taking the first three points of the quarter; China were never far behind. However, outshooting their opponents by 9-8, it was the Canadian side who entered half time ahead by just six points: 26-20.
The third quarter saw China play their way to within one point (27-28), before Canada extended their lead once more. Nevertheless, with just 10 minutes remaining in the game, there was again just one point in it: Canada ahead by only 40-39.
China took the first point of the final quarter to take the lead (41-40) before Canada quickly responded; from there, the game went end to end until Canada pulled forwards once more. With just over three minutes left on the clock, China levelled the game on 52 points apiece, but – finding another level – Canada responded to close out the game and fifth place with a 63-52 win.
Canada Head Coach Bill Johnson said: “It was tough game which what we were expecting from China: they’re a very strong picking team and they’re big in a couple of spots that gives us problems because, overall, we’re a relatively small line-up. We thought that if we hung around long enough, we could pull away in the end and – it was much later than I’d hoped in the last two minutes – it worked out the way we thought.
“Throughout the tournament, we had a couple of spurts where we played poorly and we ended up in the tiebreaker – which is the same thing that happened in London – for first in the pool. We just have to eliminate those tough spots so we don’t end up in these situations where we lose control of our own destiny. It’s happened to us twice now. We just need to take control, then we can get through this tournament and be on the podium where we want to be.”
China Head Coach Yuansheng Xu said: “I think we did very well this time and I’m satisfied with the game, but our team just don’t have that much experience – so next time we can do better.”
Full match statistics click here https://www.rio2016.com/en/paralympics/wheelchair-basketball-womens-gold-medal-match-wb-2