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Group:  D | 20.09.2008, 21:00h
Group:  D | 20.09.2008, 21:00h
98-61
28 - 1921 - 1629 - 1920 - 7
28 - 1921 - 1629 - 1920 - 7
Venue: Tel Aviv (ISR) |
Spectators: 8000 |
Referees: Christos Christodoulou (GRE), Emin Mogulkoc (TUR), Antonis Demetriou (CYP)

GAME REPORT


Israel Snatch Improbable EuroBasket Place

Israel had an incredible escape at home to defeat Great Britain in their opening EuroBasket 2009 qualifying game and on Saturday, they pulled off an even more impressive feat by destroying the Czech Republic 98-61 to earn a trip to next year's final round in Poland.

The Group D triumph improved Israel to 3-3, and the margin of victory was so large that it made their goal coefficient better than both Bulgaria and France.

Only the four Division A group winners, and the best three second-place teams advanced to the final round.

France ended up as the only second-place team not to earn a trip to Poland and will instead have to enter the Additional Qualifying Round next year.

The Czechs actually went into Saturday night's play with the best goal differential of the three teams with 2-3 records in Group D but they clearly did not recover from the huge disappointment of their 67-63 home defeat to Britain on Wednesday.

The setback has dropped them to bottom of Group D and into the Relegation Round.

Yotam Halperin had 25 points for Israel, who led 28-19 after the first quarter and then opened up a 49-35 half-time advantage.

The Czechs were outscored 29-19 in the third quarter and then Michal Jezdik's team disappeared over the final 10 minutes, scoring just seven points.

The result left the 8,000 fans who turned up to watch Israel in a state of delirium.

For the past two EuroBaskets, the Israelis had been forced to gain entry via the Additional Qualifying Round.

Now the pressure is off for ZVi Sherf's team.

Israel finished nine of 12 from long range and 22 of 41 inside the arc, and also made 27 of 34 at the free throw line.

The Czechs were out-rebounded 38-28. They made just 13 of 36 from two-point range and seven of 23 from three-point distance.

Meir Tapiro also poured in 24 for Israel.

Top performers

Accumulated statistics

58.5%

31/53
FG
M/A

33.9%

20/59

53.7%

22/41
FG2P
M/A

36.1%

13/36

75.0%

9/12
FG3P
M/A

30.4%

7/23

79.4%

27/34
FT
M/A

77.8%

14/18

38

9/29
RT
RO/RD

28

11/17

19

AS

14

16

TO

13

5

ST

8

4

BS

2

21

PF

25

98

Pts

61

Next Games

Israel

Israel

Czech Republic

Czech Republic