Serbia to meet USA in World Cup final

France knocked out by Serbia after defending champions USA beat Lithuania in the other semi-final.

    United States are without key players LeBron James and Kevin Durant [AP]
    United States are without key players LeBron James and Kevin Durant [AP]

    Serbia continued their remarkable run in the basketball World Cup knockout rounds after a 90-85 win over European champions France steered them into Sunday's final against holders United States.

    The Serbs, who have secured their first World Cup podium finish as an independent nation, will head into the showdown with the US under no pressure after punching well above their weight in the 24-nation tournament.

    They squeezed into the last-16 from a tough preliminary group with a 2-3 record but then brushed aside more fancied Greece and Brazil before an impressive win against the French.

    Holders United States showed no sign of missing their top players as they breezed into the final with a commanding 96-68 win over Lithuania.

    The champions had steamrollered into the last-four and their athletic outfit, even without top NBA players such as LeBron James and Kevin Durant, enjoyed another largely effortless evening.

    "Lithuania are a great basketball country and were more than worthy opponents," US coach Mike Krzyzewski, one of America's biggest admirers of top European teams, told a news conference.

    "We fouled like crazy (in the first half). In the second half we started afresh, we adjusted the defence and it made a huge difference."

    France will meet Lithuania in the bronze medal game on Saturday.

    SOURCE: Reuters


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