EuroBasket Qualifying Stage round up (week 4)

A picture is emerging now from each group as we head to the qualifying rounds final stages.

Group A

Iceland are still in with a shot of qualifying for their first ever Eurobasket tournament after they edged Great Britain 71-69 in London.

This defeat eliminates Great Britain from consideration. Match report here.

Both teams finish their campaign against Bosnia & Herzegovina.

Group B

Netherlands continued their surprise march to Eurobasket by beating Bulgaria 66-57, which eliminates them from contention.

The Dutch are now joint first in the group at 3-1, along with Israel who defeated Montenegro 80-65 in Podgorica, increasing the pressure on the favoured Montenegrins.

Israel’s Gal Mekel led from the front with a triple-double of 14 points, 11 rebounds, 11 assists.

“We have respect for the national team of Montenegro, which is our big rival, and against which we had a lot of problems in previous matches,” Mekel said. “We had in mind the first game in Cyprus, where we experienced a disappointing defeat. We are very excited about this victory.”

Group C

Poland scored a vital 88-76 away win over Germany to go joint top of the group.

Mateusz Pontika led the Poles with 19 points as they move to 3-1. Germany move to 2-2.

Austria also occupy top spot in the group but made hard work of their game with Luxembourg, eventually settling for an 80-71 win.

Rasid Mahalbasic led the winners with a double-double of 19 points and 12 rebounds.

Group D

Belgium handed FYR of Macedonia their first loss of the qualifying rounds after a 63-60 success in Charleroi.

Belgium are joint top of the group with the Macedonians but it’s Macedonia who own the head-to-head over the two teams due to point differential.

Belarus eliminated Denmark after a 73-66 win on the road. Vitali Liuytch led the Belorussians with a game-high 21 points.

Group E

Czech Republic held nothing back in their 88-67 win over Georgia in Nymburk.

Tomas Satoransky, originally a doubt for this game led the winners with 19 points as the Czechs improve to 3-1, while Georgia drop to 2-2.

Hungary are joint top of the group as well, but made hard work of Portugal before securing a 66-52 win.

Portugal are eliminated from qualifying contention but there’s no denying that they have challenged the teams they have come up against.

Group F

Latvia needed overtime against Sweden, but stayed perfect en route to a 76-73 win.

A double-double of 23 points and 10 rebounds from Kaspers Berzins improved Latvia to 4-0.

Romania go to 3-1, good enough for second in the group after they defeated Slovak Republic 90-86.

The visiting Slovaks though can count themselves unlucky though. They led after three quarters before the hosts pulled away in the final period.

Group E

Russia returned to winning ways with some style after they thrashed Switzerland 101-56 in Moscow.

The Russians held the Swiss to just 9 points in the second period, on their way to a comfortable win, as they move to second place in a three-team group that also includes Italy.