Australia captain Penny Taylor scored 31 points against France.
Australia captain Penny Taylor scored 31 points against France. Jessica Hill

RIO 2016: Opals keep up unbeaten run

BASKETBALL: Australia is in perfect position to win its pool and qualify for the quarter-finals after a 89-71 defeat of France in the Olympics.

Captain Penny Taylor led the way with 31 points, while Liz Cambage added 16 and Mariana Tolo 14.

The Opals now look likely to miss clashing with USA until the final if it can beat Japan in its next game on Friday and Belarus in the last group game.

Australia controlled the game and led all the way against the world's fourth ranked team.

"We knew France was going to be one of our toughest games,” Taylor said.

"They are so versatile with their players and we knew that it was going to go for 40 minutes.

"They came back at us a few times but we really clamped down our defense.”

After an even first quarter with the Opals finishing it two points up, the Australians took control.

They took a 46-29 lead at half-time and extended that to a 19-point lead going into the final quarter.


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