Paris 2024 women's basketball tournament now complete. SPORTS CHINA

This weekend saw the end of the four pre-Olympic tournaments, with 10 of the 16 participants winning the last of the coveted tickets to the Paris 2024 Olympic Games women's basketball competition, with USA the defending champions and gold medallists at the last seven Games.

France, as hosts of the Games, and the USA, as reigning world champions, had already qualified, but they also played in the qualifying tournaments. As a result, only two teams in their groups had a chance of qualifying for the Olympics, while the top three teams in the other two groups went through. 

Already qualified, Olympic hosts France played in Tournament 1 in Xi'an, China, but managed to win their three games against Puerto Rico (40-88), China (82-50) and New Zealand (39-94) with a total of 40 points from American-born Gabby Williams. 

China finished second on home soil, while Puerto Rico also qualified for the Olympics with a third place finish and the Kiwis were eliminated with three defeats and an overall score of -104. 

Australia has won three silver and two bronze Olympic medals. BASKETBALL AUSTRALIA
Australia has won three silver and two bronze Olympic medals. BASKETBALL AUSTRALIA

Despite having already qualified, the USA travelled to Antwerp, Belgium, to take part in Tournament 2. In the absence of the controversial Brittney Griner, the Americans eked out an 81-79 win over Belgium thanks to a thunderous layup from Breanna Stewart with one second left, and had no trouble beating Nigeria (46-100) and Senegal (39-101). 

Belgium will join the winners of the last six Olympic Games at Paris 2024, with Nigeria in third place. They beat Senegal 65-72 in a key African game on the opening day, with 21 points and 10 rebounds from Amy Okonkwo, a Californian of Nigerian nationality. 

Belem in Brazil was the venue for Tournament 3, but the 7,000-plus crowd at the Arena Guilherme Paraense couldn't help the 'Verdeamarelha'. The hosts lost all three games by narrow margins, first to Australia (55-60), then to Serbia (72-65) and on Sunday night to Germany in the deciding game (71-73).

Australia also beat Germany (85-82) and Serbia (73-75) in big games, with Marianna Tolo scoring 13 points and grabbing seven rebounds against the Balkan nation. The Aussies finished first, followed by Serbia and the Mannschaft in its first-ever participation. Brazil finished fourth and won't be competing in the French capital thanks to 20 points and 11 rebounds from Satou Sabally. 

Tournament 4 in Sopron saw reigning Olympic silver medallists Japan, Spain, Canada and hosts Hungary battle it out for the top three spots. Spain started with a tough loss to the Asians (75-86), but responded perfectly by beating Canada (55-60) with 16 points from new Spaniard Megan Gustafson and beating Hungary 73-72 despite already qualifying with 16 points from Maria Conde. 

Winning by 73-72, Mariona Ortiz missed two free throws with three seconds left and Agnes Studer had no time to win the game after grabbing the defensive rebound. With Hungary out of the tournament, Spain will be joined at the Games by first-placed Japan and third-placed Canada. 

Spain's best Olympic results is a silver at Rio 2016. FEB
Spain's best Olympic results is a silver at Rio 2016. FEB

Australia, Belgium, Canada, China, France, Germany, Japan, Nigeria, Puerto Rico, Serbia, Spain and the USA will await the Olympic draw for Paris 2024 from 28 July to 11 August.