Finland secures a spot in the 2023 FIBA World Cup as they cannot fall below third place in Group J due to head-to-head advantages against Slovenia, Sweden, and a win against Israel.

Credit: FIBA
Credit FIBA

Yam Madar's efforts were not enough to bring Israel a victory as Sweden celebrated a 95-83 (24-23, 28-15, 18-22, 25-23) team win in the Second Round of the 2023 FIBA World Cup Qualifiers.

Tobias Borg was the top-scorer on the winning roster with 20 points on 8-for-11 shooting and perfect 4-for-4 three-point accuracy. He also added 4 rebounds and 3 assists for 25 PIR. Melwin Poltzar added 18 points, 6 assists, and 22 PIR points to the tally.

Yam Madar led Israel with 27 points on 7-for-12 shooting. Washington Wizards forward Deni Avdija added 13 points and 5 rebounds.

Besides allowing the team to still hold hope for advancing further, Sweden's win gifted its neighbors Finland a ticket to the 2023 FIBA World Cup. Finland holds head-to-head records over both Slovenia and Sweden from the First Round. Additionally, the nordic squad defeated Israel on Wednesday in the Second Round.

Now, after overcoming Estonia this evening, Finland has 7 wins in its pocket and cannot fall below third place which guarantees a spot in the upcoming international tournament next year.

This will be only the second appearance in the World Cup for Finland and the first after a nine-year break.

"Many thanks to Sweden for the result we like. At this point, we should be extremely proud of the whole group and our joint achievement. We are a little ahead of the schedule, but maybe that is desirable in such a case," Finland's head coach Lassi Tuovi spoke after finding out the news. "This is a historic moment in Finnish basketball, and everyone involved should be proud of this."

"This was something agreed with Sweden. We helped them to the World Cup qualifiers with a victory over Croatia, and now they helped us to the World Cup," the team's sports director Henrik Dettmann joked.

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