Korea drawn in tough group A for Basketball World Cup qualifiers

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Korea drawn in tough group A for Basketball World Cup qualifiers

The Korean national women's basketball team celebrate after scoring during a FIBA Women's Asia Cup 2021 match against New Zealand on Sep. 27 in Amman, Jordan. [YONHAP]

The Korean national women's basketball team celebrate after scoring during a FIBA Women's Asia Cup 2021 match against New Zealand on Sep. 27 in Amman, Jordan. [YONHAP]

 
The Korean national team was placed in group A for the 2022 Women's Basketball World Cup qualifiers alongside Australia, Serbia and Brazil on Tuesday. 
 
The Basketball World Cup qualifiers will be held in Belgrade, Serbia starting Feb. 10, 2022.  
 
The top 12 team at the end of the qualifiers will play the main event, the 2022 FIBA Women's Basketball World Cup next September. It will be the 19th edition of the tournament and will be held in Sydney. While Australia has earned their berth as the host and the United States have earned theirs as the winner of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, all other teams will compete to avoid finishing in last position in each of their groups.  
 
Korea earned their way to the qualifiers after coming in fourth at the FIBA women’s Asia Cup, beating New Zealand and India. First place Japan, runner-up China and third place Australia will also all play the qualifiers. 
 
China plays in group B alongside France, Nigeria and Mali. Japan plays in group C alongside Bosnia and Herzegovina, Canada and Belarus. Group D consists of Russia, the United States, Puerto Rico and Belgium. The strongest team is the United States, the 10-time World Cup champions and defending champion.
 
Head coach of the Korean national women's basketball team, Jeong Seon-min watches the team play during a FIBA Women's Asia Cup 2021 match against India on Sep. 28 in Amman, Jordan. [YONHAP]

Head coach of the Korean national women's basketball team, Jeong Seon-min watches the team play during a FIBA Women's Asia Cup 2021 match against India on Sep. 28 in Amman, Jordan. [YONHAP]

 
The qualifiers are expected to be a tough outing for world No. 19 Korea. 
 
Korea is the lowest-ranked team in group A, alongside No. 3 Australia, No. 9 Serbia and No. 14 Brazil. As Australia already earned their berth, they will advance to the World Cup even if they take the last position, and the top two teams of group A will advance instead of the top three. 
 
At the Tokyo Olympics, Korea has experience facing Serbia, taking a narrow 65-61 loss against the stronger team and failing to advance to the quarterfinals. 
 
The qualifiers will start on Feb. 10, 2022 and continue until Feb. 13. 

BY YUN SO-HYANG [yun.sohyang@joongang.co.kr]
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