The Russians came strong in the game, showing that they still have high aspirations despite the absences so the first quarter was a back and forth show that saw six lead changes and eight ties, with Russia getting a small lead in the end (24-21).
In the second quarter however, the young Serbian team showed who would be boss in this game, running a 17-0 side-score, and finally winning the quarter with 4-20, to go to the locker rooms with a 13-point lead (28-41).
The Serbian lead grew even to 20 points in the third quarter and the Serbs left no chance to the defending Champions, fighting back every comeback attempt by the Russian side who never got closer than 10 points until the end of the game.
SERBIA 79-68 RUSSIA
Russia: Vorontsevich, Kurbanov, Bykov 9, Fridzon 15, McCarty 7, Sokolov 4, Dmitriev, Vyaltsev, Monya 12, Ponkrashov 4, Zozulin 7, Mozgov 10
Serbia: Popovic, Tepic 2, Teodosic 12, Paunic 3, Bjelica, Markovic 3, Tripkovic 18, Raduljica, Krstic 10, Perovic 13, Velickovic 13, Macvan 5
Dusan Ivkovic (Serbia Coach): "We deserved this victory and I want to congratulate all players, staff, and our small group of fans who was with us today. We reached our first goal which is advancing to World Championship in Turkey next year. The key for us was our bench players - they played great defense in the second quarter and we won this quarter 20-4. Now in the Semi-Finals everything is possible."
Milan Macvan: "Congratulations to Russia for a good game and for my teammates for a win. I think it was the second quarter which made the difference, we also didn't allow Russia to come back later in the game, when they tried to do it."
Sergey Monya: "We didn't play good in the second quarter, and we made a lot of mistakes. In the second half we've played quite well, but Serbia showed great experience that we don't have."
David Blatt (Russia Coach): "I want to congratulate coach Ivkovic and his team, they have now qualified for World Championships and they are on their quest to qualify to the final of Eurobasket. They dominated today's game, and everything more I would say about it would be useless. Serbia has a very good mix of inside and outside players. It's hard to focus on one aspect of their game. Because of it, they can attack you on both ends of the floor."