The Asue Arena in Osaka, Japan saw a lively start to the 2024 IWBF Women’s Repechage, with four action-packed games, as the teams from around the globe converged on the court with one goal in mind: securing a coveted ticket to the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games.

In the opening match, Australia displayed their control over Algeria, clinching a commanding 73-27 victory. Despite an initial surge from Algeria, the Australian squad, boasting the return of veterans Shelley Matheson, Kylie Gauci, and Bridie Kean, showcased their experience. Georgia Munro Cook’s impressive double-double of 31 points and 10 rebounds further solidified Australia’s control on the court.

Following the opener, the event’s official opening ceremony unfolded, setting a celebratory tone as teams were welcomed to Japan and the event by JWBF’s President Akira Tanaka and IWBF President Ulf Mehrens.

Germany continued the trend of dominant displays, steamrolling past Thailand with an 87-28 win. Led by captain Mareike Miller’s 35 points and 18 rebounds, Germany’s relentless offensive and defensive pressure overwhelmed  the young Thai team. Nathalie Passiwan’s contributions further fueled Germany’s stellar start to their Paralympic Qualifying campaign, as Germany’s Head Coach Dirk Passiwan utilised the opportunity to rotate the entire bench.

In one of the most anticipated matchups of the day, Canada proved too formidable for hosts Japan, securing an 81-48 victory. Led by a balanced scoring effort from Kady Dandeneau (20pts), Arinn Young (20pts), Rosalie Lalonde (19pts), and Cindy Ouellet (10pts), who all hit double figures, Canada displayed their intent to secure a spot in the Paralympic Games, under new Head Coach Michele Sung. Despite a valiant effort from Japan, Canada’s firepower ultimately prevailed.

The day concluded with Spain asserting their over France, securing a commanding 57-38 victory. Spain’s early lead set a solid foundation, despite a late rally from France in the fourth quarter. Beatriz Zudaire led the charge with 19 points, while Vicky Alonso made a significant impact off the bench with 14 points, sealing Spain’s victory.

The IWBF Women’s Repechage continues tomorrow with what promises to be more action. Find all the information and follow the action on the event page.

Photo Credits: X-1.