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Hosts Right On Track But Challenge Ahead

26 July 2010
Israel
Israel Head CoachDanny Franco
Israel Head Coach Danny Franco has his team on track after the Preliminary Round

Israel arrived to the game knowing even a loss in a small margin will be enough to qualify, but didn't try to protect the margin at all.

The players of head coach Danny Franco stormed the court from the start and exploded in the 2nd best offensive display of the games so far.

In the next round Israel will take on another unbeaten team - Montenegro and Estonia while dragging a key win over England from the first round.

The top two teams will advance to the semi-finals and will play a win-it-all game to snatch the ticket to Division A.

For Israel it's the first ever performance in Division B and the game today set an example to the importance of the task for the hosting side.

Lavie set a tournament high in point per single game, but had only 5 points when his team took a 31-22 lead after 10 minutes.

Vitali Liutych of Belarus finished the Preliminary Round as the top scorer with 20.5 but went through his weakest performance with only 16 against Israel.

Belarus took over the lead in the 2nd quarter, before Lavie connected for more points to give Israel a 44-41 lead at the break.

He continued to dominate with 10 more points in the 3rd quarter, and stepped up in the closing period, when Israel made the last push and left Belarus behind.

When he left the game with 3:26 to play, his team-mates already held an 88-70 on their way another big win.

All 4 wins by Israel were by double-digits so far, but the following games are expected to be much more competitive as Estonia and Montenegro will try to shock the hosts.

For Lavie and his team the real challenge starts right now.

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