The China women’s national basketball team clinched the semifinals of the 2023 FIBA Women’s Asia Cup with an 88-81 overtime win over Korea on Wednesday in Sydney.
Unlike their first two matches in the tournament, China faced some adversity early on as they finished the first quarter with a 21-12 deficit but gradually worked their way back to get the game into an overtime win.
To this point in the tournament, Washington Mystics guard Li Meng has been a relatively quiet scorer for the Chinese. But this time, she had a monster performance with 26 points, including going 8-of-9 from the free throw line. Li also added 8 rebounds and 7 assists.
Li’s performance would normally be enough to win Player of the Game honors. But New York Liberty center Han Xu was still the Chinese’s top performer. She had 33 points and 11 rebounds in the match.
For the Koreans, Jisu Park led with 22 points and 8 rebounds. Leeseul Kang, who was on the Mystics’ training camp squad last year, scored 14 points.
The Chinese have earned a berth in the semifinals which are on Saturday when they will either play Korea again or Australia. Gametime is to be determined.
The Koreans and the Opals have a play-in game for the semifinals on Friday at 5:30 a.m. ET.