Jean-Charles Upbeat As Tournament Wraps Up

15.08.2009

Coming to the Quarter-Finals France seemed like a strong medal contender.

They were the only team not to drop a single game in the entire competition, the first five of them won by a double-digit margin.

The match against Spain, on the last day of the  Qualifying Round, decided which team would win Group F, and after a tough fight France took the top to face the hosting team of Lithuania in the Quarter-Finals, while Spain finished second and faced Turkey.

Today Spain play in the semi's and earned a ticket to the U17 World Championship.

France suffered their first loss just when it mattered and play the 5-8 classification games.

Nevertheless the French team left a great impression on the competition, with a deep bench and maybe more players than any other team that could reach the top senior level.

One of most promising of them is Livio Jean-Charles.

The 2.02m combo forward stood out in the French team when he averaged 12 points per game on 60.3% shooting from the field, 85% from the charity stripe and 4.8 rebounds per contest.

He's currently ranked 2nd if field goal percentage and 11th in offensive rebounds with 2.8 rpg.

Jean-Charles is a long, athletic and quick player, though a bit weak because he didn't put up muscles yet, but inside there's a very tough kid who fights for every ball and possession on both ends of the floor.

With a very good basketball IQ, a soft touch from mid-range and a lot of room for improvement he's someone to keep following in the FIBA Europe youth events in the upcoming years.

Basketball was the default sports for Jean-Charles when he started to play at the early age of six, having been raised in a basketball family.

His father is a former player while his mother used to coach.

"I started playing in a local club, and then in some regional tournaments.

"At some point there was a big national camp and from there I was picked to play in INSEP."

Here in Kaunas he celebrates his first European Championship and senses a new experience.

"We played against many different teams and it was a good experience," he says.

"The first game against Serbia was very important for us, because they have beaten us in the past, and we had big motivation to show we can beat them as well.

"After we achieved that we gained confidence and kept playing well."

When asked about the Quarter-Finals loss to Lithuania less than 24 hours ago, Jean-Charles is still looking for the right answers.

"It was the first time we played against so many fans and such a big support of our opponents, and it was tough," he recalls.

"I guess we were also a bit unlucky, and that always hurts."

Jean-Charles joined INSEP - the French sports academy - one year ago and he'll continue the following year as well.

His road to the top has just begun, but seems like he already knows the recipe for the future.

"What I need to do is work hard-hard-hard, and listen to what my coaches say to me," is his secret to make it to the next level.

If Livio continues to develop his game, and you'd continue to follow his development in the FIBA-Europe Youth summer events, in a few years from now the


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