Referees: Shmuel Bachar (ISR), Milija Vojinovic (SRB), Marius Ciulin (ROU)
Parker Not Enough As Turkey Remain Perfect
When Tony Parker announced he would show up late and play for his country in this summer's EuroBasket qualifying games, there was unbridled joy in France.
Parker cannot win games for the French on his own, though.
He couldn't on Saturday when pouring in 30 points in a 78-77 defeat at Ukraine, and he couldn't on Wednesday when unbeaten Turkey overcame his 32 points to hand the French their second straight Group C defeat, 77-65.
Bogdan Tanjevic's Turkey, desperate to reach EuroBasket 2009 in Poland as they prepare to host the 2010 FIBA World Championship, trailed 24-21 in the second quarter but reeled off 15 consecutive points and never trailed again.
Parker, the San Antonio Spurs guard, hardly put a foot wrong.
He made 13 of 19 shots from the floor but his output wasn't nearly enough to overcome Turkey, who have also claimed wins against Ukraine and Belgium.
No other French player reached double figures in points, with Tariq Kirksay's eight making him the team's second-leading scorer.
Yakhouba Diawara gave the French a 24-21 advantage early in the second quarter with a pair of free throws, but Turkey's Kerem Tunceri replied with a lay-up and ended up hitting a three and adding another basket to cap the 15-0 run that left the home side on top 36-24 with 2:42 remaining in the first half.
The brilliant Parker hit a three-ball right before the end of the second quarter to leave France trailing 38-35, but Turkey scored the first four points of the second half with an Ersan Ilyasova jump shot and two free throws from their superstar, Hedo Turkoglu.
Michel Gomez's France got no closer than five points for the rest of the third quarter and once in the fourth, Turkey's lead never fell below 11.
Tunceri finished with 16 points, Oguz Savas 15 and Kerem Gonlum 13 for Turkey.
Ender Arslan (12) and Turkoglu (10) also reached double figures in points for the winners.
Turkey did a lot of their damage against France at the free throw line, making 27 of 31 (87%) compared to France's nine of 13 (69.2%).
Quotes Turkey vs. France
Bogdan Tanjevic, Turkey coach:
"We played very well both in offense and defense. Tonight, my experienced players like Hifayet, Kerem Gönlüm and Kerem Tunçeri, guide the younger players very well. This also makes me very happy. This intelligence is more important than the victory itself. We now have a big advantage, but it is only an advantage. The game against Ukraine, is very important for us. Our players are tired after this match. We'll try to regain our energy before the game against Ukraine. "
Oğuz Savaş, Turkey player:
"We started the game aiming only for victory. We were very good at defense. We kept France to 65 points. It is ab important detail for us. Because of this victory, the match against Ukraine becomes even more important. I hope, we will win our last three matches and go to the finals as group winners."
Michel Gomez, France coach:
"Turkey played better than us. For the last three years, coach Tanjevic uses young players. They have been playing togethar for these three years. This is so important. We knew that the game will be tough. We should assist Tony Parker better. We could not assist him enough against Turkey."
Tony Parker, France player:
"Turkey had a very good game. We could not score easily. Both inside and outside, they played very well. I have been in Turkey before. I knew that the atmosphere will be difficult for us. Fans ara always behind their team. Now the Belgium game is more important for us. We need to win against Belgium."