Ukraine’s national basketball team failed to confront the current European champions – Slovenia team in the third round of Eurobasket 2022 qualifiers on November 28.
In the first “ten minutes” the Slovenian defeated the Ukrainian team, having a 24-point advantage (33:9). Before the big break, Ukraine’s national team was able to reduce the lag and then won by a few points in each quarter. However, this was not enough to at least equalize the score and translate the game into overtime. The result remained in favor of the Slovenian team – 84:73 (33:9, 17:19, 13:19, 21:26).
Volodymyr Gerun scored the most points in the Ukrainian team – 15. Debutant of the national team Anatoliy Sunddel recorded 14 points in his asset.
After three rounds, Ukraine’s national team is third in the Group F standings with four points. The blue-and-yellows’ win over Austria with a score of 88:73 back in February, as well as two defeats – from Hungary (60:62), and now also from Slovenia. The quartet F is led by Slovenia, who has 5 points, followed by Hungary with 4 points. The Ukrainian team will play the next match on November 30 at 18.10 against Austria. Games of the national team take place without spectators in a special isolated camp – “bubble” – in Slovenia.
Earlier it became known that another opponent of Ukraine in the group stage – Hungary – was forced to leave the isolated camp, due to the fact that six representatives of the Hungarian national team received positive tests for coronavirus. Now their matches, which were scheduled in November, will take place in February together with the games of the third game window – the 5th and 6th round of qualifying.
In the case of the Group of Russia, there is a grand rival – Italy, which can not strain to win all the matches, without problems it beat even Russia in the first round with a goal difference of 19. But Estonia and Northern Macedonia are the underdogs, who in the matches among themselves have to decide who goes next. In the first match, the Estonians won. Then Estonia was expected to lose to Italy and Northern Macedonia to Russia. Now they will be replaced by rivals. If Russia suddenly loses one match to Estonia, it will not be a tragedy. One victory over Northern Macedonia will lead to Eurobasket, but just for the sake of prestige, you need to win today.
For the Russian national team, the match against Estonia will be the third in this qualification, which is mostly a formality for most of the national teams that represent something in Europe. Eurobasket is a celebration of basketball for everyone, not getting to the tournament is harder than getting into. We need to try to take the last place in your group, as there are three teams at Eurobasket. Although frankly weak teams are screened in the preliminary stages of qualification, outspoken passengers are still there, and for them, the last place in the group is already prepared. Sometimes there are even 2 such passengers and they already decide among themselves who will get to the continental tournament.