|26 July 2012|
|In a 45-minute game of intense defensive effort on both sides, Lidija Turcinovic led France in scoring with 14 points|
France laid down a marker for the U18 European Championship Women and showed they could be real contenders after emerging victorious in a brutal and intense overtime struggle against Spain in Group A.
While the Spanish were missing the considerable talent and imposing presence of the injured Astou Ndour who hasn't travelled to Bucharest, it was still a hugely impressive 68-67 success for the French.
On a day when the Mihai Viteasu Sport Hall witnessed its' third overtime in four games, the best was most definitely saved until last in an epic roller-coaster.
France looked to have made the game-breaking run during regulation, when they went 65-59 ahead with little over a minute remaining.
But, the Spanish managed to get out of jail, albeit temporarily, when Ariadna Pujol calmly made two free-throws with less than a second left to force the extra period.
Just when it seemed like the momentum may have been going the way of Spain, the French managed to grind it out the victory in what was a real battle of wills during the additional five minutes which only witnessed five points being scored.
Even in defeat, there was still plenty to suggest Spain will still have the capability of reaching another Final having lost to Belgium in the showpiece game in Oradea last summer.