US survive scare to down Spain in basketball quarters

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The US trailed by 11 points early in the second quarter but rallied strongly to reach the men’s basketball semi-finals at the Tokyo Games 95-81 over world champions Spain on Tuesday.

Having suffered a rare loss in the group phase to France, the star-studded American side were soon under pressure again but led by Kevin Durant rallied to overturn their early deficit.

The US pulled away in the third quarter having gone in level at 43-all and could eventually ease up with the tie won.

Durant posted a best 29 points for the US while Spain’s Ricky Rubio ended on the losing side in spite a heroic 38.

The US will meet Argentina or Australia in the semi-finals on Thursday.

European champions Slovenia thrashed Germany 94-70 to set up a last four meeting with Italy or France.

Superstar Luka Doncic contributed 20 points though teammate Zoran Dragic stole the show with 27, aided by five of seven shooting from the three-point line.