Croatia put paid to Italy's unbeaten record in the EuroBasket Women Additional Qualifying Round with a 75-64 victory in Crikvenica on Monday evening.
The result lifted the Croatians to second place in Group B, but the triumph didn't prevent the Azzurre (3-1) from progressing to this year's Final Round in Latvia.
Ana Lelas had 19 points to lead the Croatians with Jelena Ivezic contributing 15.
Simona Ballardini finished with 17 points and six rebounds for Italy, who will return to the Final Round after hosting the event in 2007.
Croatia won for the second time to finish 2-2.
They also get the bad taste out of their mouths from the first meeting when the Italians destroyed them 83-50 on January 10.
Stipe Bralić, Croatia head coach:
"We were very motivated tonight because we wanted win this game in front of or fans. We made much less mistakes compared to the first game against Italy and we were shooting very well from 3-point range. I would like to thank all my players."
Ana Lelas, Croatia forward:
"We are satisfied both with the way we played tonight and the result. We managed to finish this qualification with a win and we hope that this was just the first of many more wins in the future."
Gianpiero Ticchi, Italy head coach:
"Croatia played a good game with a very strong defense and we didn't find our rhythm. It was hard for us to be really motivated because we were already qualified for EuroBasket Women. This young Croatian team has a good perspective for the future."
Simona Ballardini, Italy guard:
"It was a good game in a friendly atmosphere but it was actually not important for us. The key for the Croatian win was their 3-point shooting and the good defense, especially in the second quarter."