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Group:  A | 17.08.2010, 19:30h
Group:  A | 17.08.2010, 19:30h
76-81
17 - 2222 - 2621 - 2116 - 12
17 - 2222 - 2621 - 2116 - 12
Venue: Tel Aviv (ISR) |
Spectators: 11000 |
Referees: Daniel Hierrezuelo (ESP), Engin Kennerman (TUR), Sasa Maricic (SRB)

GAME REPORT


Italy Very Much Alive, Avenge Israel Defeat

A critical 26 point haul from Andrea Bargnani further boosted the potential resurrection of Italy in their stuttering bid to reach EuroBasket 2011 as they left hosts Israel stunned with a super 81-76 win in Tel-Aviv and call into question those who thought they had already blown their chances - including Coach Pianigiani.

Quite whether the coach truly meant when he said after two opening defeats his teams dreams were effectively over will probably never be known but this latest success could just light a real fire under Group A heading into the final games.

Italy started strongly and led 22-17 after the first quarter although after just over three minutes into the second, a score by Lior Eliyahu tied the game up at 27-27.

With three minutes to go until the half-time break, Italy then pulled clear once again, this time finishing with a 10-2 tear to finish the period - a Bargnani dunk very much the highlight.

Trailing 48-39 heading into the second half, the home team knew they would have to come from behind the same way they did in their previous game against Montenegro but this time it wasn't to be.

They were still behind by nine points going into the fourth quarter and while Eliyahu made it a one shot game at 79-76 with less than ninety seconds remaining, Italy made their free-throws in crunch time to celebrate an impressive win.

As well as Bargnani, Marco Belinelli was instrumental in the success and posted 14 points, eight rebounds and six assists.

Eliyahu finished with 19 points for Israel while Omri Casspi continued his good form with 20 points and 10 rebounds.

COACH QUOTES


Quotes Israel vs. Italy

Italy coach Simone Pianigiani:
"Of course we played a good game. Since our first appearance we're getting better with every game. This is an important win, not only for qualification, because it will be difficult for us, but for our confidence. It was a big game for us because everyone knows what it is to play here in this hall, in terms of European basketball. Mental power and concentration are needed in order to lead for 40 minutes."

Israel coach Arik Shivek:

"This is a bad moment in our campaign. In fact, after this loss we are starting all over again. Let's face it, they dominated throughout the whole game. We should not lose a home game, we'll have to balance it with a win on the road."

Israel player Yotam Halperin:
"Of course we're all disappointed. We hurt in the first half, especially in defense. It's a moment where we start from the beginning, and we have to come back with a win from Latvia anyway. Bargnani was excellent and we couldn't stop him. I think we made small errors, and because of them we lost but we need to move on."

Top performers

Accumulated statistics

46.4%

26/56
FG
M/A

49.2%

31/63

55.6%

20/36
FG2P
M/A

70.6%

24/34

30.0%

6/20
FG3P
M/A

24.1%

7/29

72.0%

18/25
FT
M/A

63.2%

12/19

31

6/25
RT
RO/RD

36

8/28

18

AS

17

10

TO

7

5

ST

6

0

BS

3

19

PF

23

76

Pts

81

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