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USA shocked by France in men’s Olympic basketball

A USA team led by 11-time NBA All-Star Kevin Durant were beaten 83-76 by France in a huge Olympic basketball upset on Sunday.

The French, with a team containing NBA players including Rudy Gobert and Evan Fournier, held Durant to just 10 points in the first-round game.

The Americans had looked rusty in the build-up to Tokyo, losing to Nigeria in a warm-up game, and the defeat will underline Durant’s fears expressed before the Games that his side will not face a “cakewalk” in Japan.

Fournier was sensational for France, top-scoring with 28 points. Although the Boston Celtics player only scored four from 12 from the three-point line, he found his range when it mattered to help the French came from behind to stun the Americans.

“I tried to be aggressive. As an NBA player I know the players we were facing. We had to show the team how to attack them,” Fournier said.

France clawed back from a 10-point deficit to set up a breathless final quarter and as the USA failed to find any rhythm — and Durant failed to help his team — the French took control. 

Fournier’s three-pointer with 57 seconds remaining put his team ahead 76-74 and when Durant hit the rim with a three-pointer himself the French closed out the game with a succession of free throws.

When Jayson Tatum fouled Nicolas Batum, the French veteran NBA forward hit both from the line to seal a famous victory.

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