Germany outduels Serbia to win first-ever FIBA World Cup championship

Glückwunsch, Germany! (FIBA)

By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña

History has been made.

After 18 consecutive tries of winning the coveted FIBA World Cup title, all the sacrifices and hard work finally paid off for the German national hoops squad after clinching its first-ever championship in the global hoops games last September 10, 2023, held at the Mall of Asia Arena in Manila, Philippines.

Germany capped off its dominant undefeated campaign after taking down the strong Serbian national team, 83-77, during the grand finals match of the FIBA World Cup.

The sold-out MOA arena was again delighted with a beautiful game between the last two remaining teams highlighted by high-level ball movements, counter-attack pieces, and a chess game between the two talented head coaches.

However, it was Germany who remained consistent on the offensive end led by NBA point guard Dennis Schroder who finished the title match with an impressive performance of 28 points, two rebounds, and two assists.

With the game deadlocked at 51-all midway through the crucial third quarter, it was Schroder who spearheaded a massive German offensive avalanche that broke the tie.

From 51-all, the Germans flipped the switch and suddenly took a commanding double-digit lead, 69-57, in the last two minutes of the third canto.

Despite the punch that the Germans gave the Serbians, Bogdan Bogdanovic and the rest of the team clawed their way back after several three-point baskets to keep themselves within striking distance.

The Wagner brothers of Germany answered back with their own baskets at the paint to protect their lead but the Serbians always struck back, showing great grit and resiliency that helped them weather the storm.

Germany looked to bag the championship title with only two minutes remaining in the game after holding a nine-point lead, 78-69, but Serbia still fought with their all to trim their deficit to just a deuce, 79-77, with only 26 seconds in the battle for gold.

With the game on the line and Germany needing someone to deliver the dagger conversion, Schroder answered the call and made the biggest shot of the game after driving down the lane to give his team a four-point lead, 81-77.

Serbia had the chance to inch closer but failed to execute their drawn play which led to a foul on Schroder. The newly-signed guard of the Toronto Raptors then sealed the deal for Germany after knocking down two shots from the charity stripe to give his nation a historic outing in the 2023 FIBA World Cup.

Franz Wagner backstopped Schroder with 19 big points, seven rebounds and two assists while Johannes Voigtmann added 12 points and eight rebounds.

Meanwhile, Serbia had 17 points from Bogdanovic and 21 markers from Aleksa Avramovic but weren’t enough to secure the gold medal.