Russia beat Croatia 71-63 in a finely balanced and fairly low-key affair to secure their second victory of the tournament.
With Spain playing on the other court the support that the Croatians had come to expect wasn’t as strong, and the quiet atmosphere seemed to transfer onto the court.
There were no points scored from open play in the last two and a half minutes of a game that had no clearly superior side.
Things stayed close throughout with neither side ever pulling away to a huge lead, but in which Russia remained slightly in front with Croatia threatening to overtake but never doing so.
The lead changed hands several times before Russia got in front, and they managed to stay their mainly because Croatia weren’t finishing their plays.
An 8-0 run in the fourth gave Croatia a one point lead with 2:57 remaining as Marino Sarlija converted the last field goal of the game.
In the final minute Mario Delas missed a lay up which would have brought his side to within a point of the Russians, but then during a string of fouls and timeouts Russia managed to extend their lead from the free throw line and win a second victory.
Players of note in the game were Valentin Novikov who scored well for Russians with 21 points, while both Filip Kruslin and Delas again had good games despite another defeat.
Kruslin scored 23 points and Delas hit 12 while pulling down 15 rebounds.