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Olympic Facts – Women’s Basketball Olympic Tournament

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Montreal 1976

Montreal (Quebec, Canada), one of the most beautiful and modern sites in the Western Hemisphere, hosted the first Olympic women’s basketball tournament in 1976. Six countries competed for the gold medal, including the Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia and Japan. The international encounter was won by the women’s national team of the Soviet Union (now Russia). Just a year earlier, the Soviet team had won the VII Global Championship in Cali, Colombia (South America) by beating Japan in the gold medal game. Meanwhile, on July 23, 1976, America won second place in the multi-sport event after losing to the USSR (led by its international star Uljana Semjonova) 112-77, having won the right to participate in the XXIII Olympiad by winning the inaugural FIBA ​​Women’s Basketball Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. The silver medalists were Lusia Harris, Cindy Brogdon, Susan Rojcewicz, Ann Meyers, Julienne Simpson, Patricia Head, Mary Anne O’Connor, Patricia Roberts, Gail Marquis, Nancy Lieberman, Charlotte Lewis and Nancy Dunkle. The American team began its pre-Olympic preparation after winning the VI Pan American Cup in Mexico City in October 1975.

Moscow 1980

Under Semjonova’s leadership, the host country USSR won the Moscow Olympic Tournament in 1980, followed by Bulgaria (silver medal), Yugoslavia (bronze), Hungary (4th), Cuba ( 5th) and Italy (6th). It was the second Olympic victory for the USSR (also known as the Soviet Union during the Cold War). On the other hand, Latvian giant Uljana Semjonova was Moscow’s most notable basketball player in 1980. Over the next few years, 7-foot-1, 284-pound Semjonova was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Maryland. ), the first player from the former USSR to accomplish this feat.

LA 1984

For the first time ever, the United States women’s basketball team won the Olympic championship in Southern California. The People’s Republic of China won the silver medal. The bronze medal went to the Republic of Korea; Eastern European teams did not participate in the 1984 Olympiad due to the Moscow boycott. En route to the Games in Los Angeles, the American team – with notable sportswomen such as Janice Lawrence, Cheryl Miller and Lynette Woodard – won the IX Pan American Sports Games on Venezuelan soil in August 1983. In Venezuela, America defeated Cuba 100-82 (43-38) to win the Pan American gold medal. A few weeks ago, they came close to winning the FIBA ​​Basketball World Cup on Brazilian soil.

Seoul 1988

On October 29, 1988, in Seoul, capital of South Korea, the American women’s team won gold in the Olympic event, after finishing first at the 1984 Games in Los Angeles (California). In the final, they beat Yugoslavia 77-70 (42-36). Nevertheless, the “most exciting game” was when America, led by All-Star player Teresa Edwards, beat the Soviet Union 102-88 (50-39) on October 27 (in the semi-finals). . The United States won the Olympic trophy with the following world-class players: Suzanne McConnell, Cynthia Cooper, Jennifer Gillom, Katrina McClaim, Andrea Lloyd, Victoria Bullett, Bridgette Gordon, Teresa Weatherspoon, Anne Donovan, Cynthia Brown, Mary Ethridge and Miss Edwards. . Two years ago, in 1986, they won the world tournament in the Russian capital of Moscow. In the second half of the 20th century, American Edwards made history by winning four gold medals at the Summer Games from the 1980s to the early 2000s: Los Angeles 1984, Seoul 1988, Atlanta 1996 and Sydney 2000. Uljana Semjonova (Latvia), Hortencia Fatima Marcari (Brazil) and Edwards are considered the most famous players in Olympian history.

1996 Atlanta Games

A miracle happened at Atlanta 1996! Despite suffering from a bloody civil war, where more than four million people were massacred (and thousands of girls were raped), incredibly the African republic of Zaire (now the Democratic Republic of Congo/DRC) s qualified as one of the top 12 teams in the world at the Games of the 26th Olympiad in the United States, setting an example for several Third World countries, from Peru and the Philippines to India and Brunei Darussalam. Without a doubt, it was “the most memorable moment in the sporting history of Zaire”. After receiving the support of Dikembe Mutumbo, American star player of Congolese origin, the African team went to Atlanta. From an Olympian point of view, the Zaire team should be inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame.

Athens 2004

The 2004 Olympic tournament was won by the United States of America followed by Australia (silver), Russia (bronze), Brazil (4th), Czech Republic (5th), ​​Spain (6th), Greece (7th), New Zealand (8th), People’s Republic of China (9th), Japan (10th place), Nigeria (11th) and South Korea South (12th). In the Greek capital of Athens, the United States won its third gold medal for the third time in a row – the most Olympic tournament wins in basketball by a women’s team. Curiously, Nigerian basketball player Mfon Udoka was the league’s second top scorer with 21.7 points.

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