Plenty On The Line For Belarus And Turkey

16 June 2009
By David Hein
A spot in the Quarter-Finals of the 2009 EuroBasket Women is up for grabs as the 2007 bronze medalists Belarus face off against Turkey in the Qualification Round Group F.

Ceyhun Yildizoglu's Turks currently sit in third place with a 2-2 mark in the group while Belarus are 1-3.

Both teams will know what result is necessary to reach the final eight after Italy take on Lithuania in the first contest on Tuesday.

Turkey will advance to the quarters with a victory. They also can move on with a loss by six points should Italy beat Lithuania.

Anatoli Buyalski's Belarus must win to have any hope of returning to the final eight. But they also need help.
A victory combined with an Italian loss against Lithuania would put Belarus in the quarters. And if Italy beat Lithuania, then Buyalski's team has to knock off Turkey by eight points.

Head-to-Head: This will the first ever match-up between these two teams.

Last Time Out: Belarus snapped a three-game losing streak by beating Lithuania 61-55. Turkey lost 55-43 against France.

Key Match-Up: Belarus backcourt vs. Turkish pressure. Belarus face the possibility of playing without starting point guard Natallia Marchanka, who suffered a broken nose but played in the fourth quarter of their win over Lithuania. Belarus will need Marchanka to play and be in top form and stand up to the tough Turkish pressure defense. Otherwise Buyalski and his team will be heading home sooner than they had hoped.

Key Stat: 5. Belarus low post players Anastasiya Verameyenka and Yelena Leuchanka combined for five assists in Belarus's victory over Lithuania. Coach Anatoli Buyalski said afterwards that it was by design that the offense go more through Verameyenka and Leuchanka. They will likely need another game of about five assists to collect the win.

X-Factor: Saziye Ivegin. The Turkish forward has been shooting 65 percent from three-point range. And if Ivegin can keep up her hot stroke that could give some much needed space for the likes of Nevin Kristen Nevlin. 

Sounding Off: "We think the strongest point of the Turkish team is the guards. And I think from the start they are going to press our guards. So we need to play the game we played (against Lithuania) - to use our post players more. We cannot overload our guards too much and make the post players make the game." Belarus coach Anatoli Buyalski


20.06.2009 - By Joseph Wilson
20.06.2009 - By Joseph Wilson
19.06.2009 - By Joseph Wilson
19.06.2009 - By Joseph Wilson

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