Argentina survived a tough battle before overcoming Panama in the FIBA Americas Championships ©AFP/Getty Images

Argentina and hosts Mexico have both secured semi-final spots at the 2015 International Basketball Federation (FIBA) Americas Championship after each secured comfortable victories, while Canada and Puerto Rico also won on the seventh day of action.

Argentina, the Athens 2004 Olympic champions, who have been in superb form throughout the two rounds of competition so far in Mexico City, overcame a slow start to cruise past Panama 84-57.

A 25-10 third quarter was decisive as the South American side cruised clear, rotating players but still not losing their intensity in the final stages.

Mexico were forced to endure a much tougher battle against Venezuela, trailing for 39 minutes before edging ahead for a 73-70 victory.

Jorge Gutierrez was the home-crowd hero as he scored four points in the final nine seconds to clutch victory from the jaws of defeat.

Home support proved crucial as Mexico eventually outlasted Venezuela ©AFP/Getty Images
Home support proved crucial as Mexico eventually outlasted Venezuela ©AFP/Getty Images

Puerto Rico claimed their first victory of the second phase against neighbours Dominican Republic, winning 98-92 to keep alive their hopes of achieving a semi-final slot.

"We continue to fight for the qualification," said star player Ramon Clemente, who accumulated 15 points and six rebounds.

"We know we have to go one game at a time, Dominican Republic is a very good team and we were worn out from the match with Mexico, but the team showed great commitment to stay with the victory."

Pan American Games silver medallists Canada showed their class in the day's other match, dominating throughout in a 109-82 victory over Uruguay.

Orlando Magic power forward Andrew Nicholson was the star, earning the man of the match award with 15 points, 10 rebounds and six assists.

The two finalists overall will qualify directly for the 2016 Rio Olympics.

The teams that place third, fourth and fifth will clinch a spot in next year's FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament.

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