A thrilling final quarter comeback by Bulgaria and a wonderful shooting display from Filip Videnov helped to preserve their unbeaten status in Group C as 3,000 fans in Sofia celebrated a hard fought and memorable 74-70 victory over Poland.
Having trailed for the majority of the game and still eleven points behind heading into the final period, the hosts suddenly began to shift through the gears in explosive fashion as they posted a stunning 20-5 run.
It left the game hanging in the balance and while Poland briefly composed themselves and managed to re-take the lead after a triple by Dardan Berisha with just under three minutes remaining at 65-64, it was the last time they would be in front.
Bulgaria continued their good work down the stretch although another triple by Berisha with just 3 seconds left had the nerves of the home fans jangling - especially when Videnov then missed two free-throws but a last gasp tip-in by Kaloyan Ivanov settled things.
Poland will be frustrated at the way they capitulated in the last period having looked impressive for 30 minutes. Much of that was down to Maciej Lampe who had a double-double of 18 points and 11 rebounds.
Videnov claimed 26 points including 5 triples for Bulgaria to take the MVP award.
Bulgaria Player Filip Videnov:
I am not surprised with this game. We deserved the win. We had some
problems till the beginning of the 4-th quarter, but we have that
experience this summer. We played some games like this. All the teams are
very equal. We hope we will go on the same way. It is great that we show
our hearth in the game against so strong teams.
Bulgaria Head Coach Rosen Barchovski:
We were under great pressure. It was our first host game. We were a little
bit shocked in the beginning of the game and we showed this - we had
problems in defense and in offense. In the end we showed, that we are well
prepared and we can play with heart. We were very well physical prepared.
It is just one win. We hope, we will go on the same way. But I hope we
won't have many problems to go back in the game from 14 points behind.
Every game is different, this may not happen again. Now we have to rest
and there are new games against good teams, it will be hard.
Poland Head Coach Igor Gryszchuk:
We played good game, we did everything we tried. We controlled the game
till the fourth part. Then Videnov played great, scored very important
points from big distance. And we did 5 turnovers.