After the lesson against fearful opponents lithuania, dennis schroder& co. Straight into the eighth finals. Despite clearly missing out on a group victory at the european championships, the german basketball team is confident of making it to the final.O.-duel with france to start in istanbul.
"It’s naturally annoying that we didn’t get first place," said schroder after the 72:89 loss to co-favorite lithuania in tel aviv. "But it’s definitely a success that we’re coming to istanbul. Whoever plays harder there, whoever plays better every possession, whoever fights better on defense, has the better chances – and that’s what we want to be."
In the seventh defeat in the seventh tournament duel with the three-time european champions from the baltic states, the young team of national coach chris fleming was clearly shown its limits. For the fifth time, schroder was the best german scorer with 26 points, but he was also unable to make a mark during the decisive weak phase in the second half.
"We lost to an absolute title contender," summed up ingo weiss, president of the german basketball association. Whether he feared a crack in the team? "Nonsense! The boys want to stay in istanbul a little longer, they have already found out what pubs there are for a nice meal."
After the energy-sapping fifth game in seven days, the first thing on the agenda was regeneration in an ice bath. At 5.30 a.M. On thursday morning the team leaves from the team hotel for the airport, around 9 a.M.00 o’clock all four eighth-finalists from tel aviv are supposed to take off together for istanbul.
After another day of rest, the duel with france is on the agenda for saturday. The final dress rehearsal for the european championships against the currently weak european bronze medalists from 2015 was lost in berlin with 79:85. "We still have a score to settle with them, anything can happen in istanbul," stressed captain robin benzing. "Now it’s do-or-die games, we have to be there on the dot."The french conceded a 78-95 defeat to unbeaten slovenia in helsinki on wednesday and only finished third in their group. The german team finished second in the preliminary round.
Schroder in particular gave his team a chance to win the group for a long time in a brilliant first half. In just under three minutes before the break, the point guard hit two three-pointers, scoring twelve quick points in that time period. Youngster isaiah hartenstein scored on an alley-oop pass to make it 43:42 – the first and only german lead of the game.
Led by their two big men, NBA center jonas valanciunas and donatas motiejunas, lithuania kept pulling away in the second half and proved that it is a title contender. With a 13:0 run, the favorite pulled away to 77:60, the german team did not score a point for more than seven minutes. Schroder also reduced, lamented in vain about arbitrator’s decisions.
After the match, the 23-year-old confirmed that he had left his backpack on the bus. "It happens, it was my own fault," said schroder. But he does not feel robbed. The eliminated israelis and lithuanians had been robbed in the team hotel, both associations confirmed to the german press agency upon request. According to their own statements, the german delegation was not affected by this.