Quotes Belarus vs. Romania

10 September 2008

Cernat Costel, Romania coach:

"Today's game had little in common with the first one, when we lost to Cyprus by a single point. In Belarus we lacked rebounding and allowed our opponents to shoot high percentage from the field and in particular from beyond the three-point line. So, our goal right now is to improve in the rebounding department as well as play some hard defense. In general, I feel that we can compete with the likes of Belarus. We just didn't show our top game tonight. I hope it will be a different story in our next game - a home fixture versus Switzerland."

Virgil Stanescu, Romania player:

"I'd like to congratulate our opponents. They played well and strong today. Belarus was really better, and not only on the scoreboard. We didn't have a good start, maybe due to the bad experience from our previous game against Cyprus. Anyway, it's always very difficult to come from behind while facing such a competent opponent. I'm sure this was one of the toughest games we'll have in the group, but I'll also say that we won't play like that when we meet Belarus at home next year."

Aliaksandr Popkou, Belarus coach:

"It was the first game for me in charge of the team, and naturally I was very excited. I'm extremely pleased by the fact that all twelve players made significant contributions to our victory today. Not all of our guys performed to their true level but every one of them faught and played hard, especially on the defensive end. We prepared well for the game and managed to stop the best Romanian players from scoring their usual amounts of points. I'm glad that our big men - Mikalai Alikseyeu, Oleg Kozhenets and Yahor Meshcharakou - all had a good game. Among other players, Siarhei Charykau's performance is worth mentioning, as the newcomer played well at the point guard position which has been troublesome for Belarus lately. Right now we're studying our future opponents and will do our best to maintain the level of play we've shown today."

Oleg Kozhenets, Belarus player:

"It was a fascinating and close game although we were ahead most of the time. I'm not completely satisfied by my own performance, but it's understandable, given that I've only joined the team two days ago. Hopefully, I'll be able to help the team even more in the future."

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