The hosts in Groups C and D opened their campaigns with defeats in contrasting fashion on day two of Eurobasket 2017.
There was also an clinical shooting display from Belgium against Great Britain and tournament favourites Spain showcased their dominance against Montenegro.
Bojan Bogdanovic excelled with 23 points as he helped Croatia to a narrow 67-58 win over Hungary in Cluj-Napoca.
After staying so competitive throughout and enjoying the lead late on, the Hungarians faltered in the fourth quarter, scoring only five points in the period as Croatia took advantage to hold on for victory.
On his 200th appearance for Spain, Pau Gasol steered his side to a resounding 99-60 success over Montenegro.
The Eurobasket MVP of 2015 totalled 10 points, eight rebounds and five assists while Willy Hernangomez posted 18 points in a comfortable start to the defence of their crown.
Czech Republic comfortably saw-off the challenge of Group C hosts Romania 83-68 in the final game in Cluj-Napoca.
Tomas Satoransky impressed with a double-double of 20 points and 13 rebounds to lead the Czechs.
Belgium were on fire from outside as they pulled away in the fourth quarter to beat Great Britain 103-90 in Istanbul.
Maxime De Zeeuw led the way for the Belgians with 21 points, matched also by a double-double by GB’s Gabe Olaseni, who posted 21 points and 11 rebounds, but the key was the fourth period showing from Belgium that saw them shoot 14/38 from three-point land.
NBA rookie Bogdan Bogdanovic got one up on his more experienced counterpart Kristaps Porzingis as Serbia ousted Latvia 92-82 in the second game in Group D.
In a thrilling encounter, full of highlights, Bogdanovic, who will play for the Sacramento Kings this upcoming season, poured in 30 points to lead the Serbs
Dairus Bertans led Latvia with 23 points. Porzingis added 18.
Alexey Shved hit a decisive three-pointer to give Russia a massive 76-73 win over Turkey to bring the first day’s play in Istanbul to a close.
The Khimki guard drained a three-point coffin-nailer with 25.9 seconds to go to break Turkish hearts and seal the win. Shved finished with 22 points.
Photo: Mansoor Ahmed