The Belgian Cats thus line up a four out of four after their success two days ago over Portugal (49-59) and consolidate the first place in their group G. A success of Finland over the Portuguese later in the evening would qualify mathematically the Belgians by Philip Mestdagh.
More accustomed to the playing conditions after a first meeting against Portugal on Thursday, the Belgian Cats immediately took Ukraine by the throat with a 0-9 then a 2-17 after barely 4 minutes of play. Jana Raman, Billie Massey (12 of his 15 points before the break), Kim Mestdagh and Julie Allemand had taken the match head-to-head. The rotations of Philip Mestadgh did not change the dynamics of the Belgians who went to 17-29. The maximum difference will rise to 18 units (21-39, 17th) before a return from Ukraine as half-time approaches (35-41), which will ultimately be whistled at 37-45.
Ukraine will return to 5 lengths on the restart (42-47). Julie Allemand, with a triple, and Jana Raman, will restart the machine. It will be 47-57 per half hour. The Belgians will keep this ten-point lead before forcing the addition at the end of the match (65 to 87).
The centerpiece, Ukrainian side, Alina Iagoupova finished with 32 points, 7 rebounds, 7 assists, but that was not enough to worry the Belgian Cats.
Despite the absences of Emma Meesseman, positive for Covid-19, and Kyara Linskens, injured in the knee, on the floor and of Pierre Cornia, the assistant also infected by the coronavirus, Belgium has fulfilled its mission to bring back two new victories for Portugal.
The last two meetings of the group are scheduled for February 4 and 6, 2021 against Finland and Portugal, still in one place, yet to be designated, but it will not be in Belgium. The winner of each of the nine groups as well as the five best runners-up qualify.
The Euro 2021 women’s basketball is organized in France (Strasbourg) and Spain (Valence) from June 17 to 27. Valencia will host the final phase. The top six of this European Championship (at 16) will qualify for a qualifying tournament for the 2022 World Cup (with 12 countries) in Australia.
A qualification for Euro 2021 would be the third in a row for the Belgian Cats, bronze medalists in the 2017 edition, after just ten years of absence, and 5th in the 2019 edition in Serbia.
Between the two, Belgium took an astonishing fourth place at the 2018 World Cup in Tenerife and secured its place at the Olympic Games for the first time in its history during the pre-Olympic tournament in Ostend last February.