|Tina Charles has once more put herself in reckoning for MVP honours, with a commanding display for Wisla Can-Pack|
Wisla Can-Pack center Tina Charles posted yet another spellbinding performance to help her team take a precious 68-64 win against Bourges Basket to make it four victories in a row in Group A.
Having been crowned EuroLeague Women MVP Of The Week four times already this season, Charles made a bid for her fifth accolade with another towering display of quality and unstoppable power as she racked up 33 points and 15 rebounds.
However, Wisla made it tough for themselves against a Bourges team who couldn't field their main offensive threat with Frida Eldebrink sitting on the sidelines nursing a wrist injury.
Initially, it looked as if the locals in Krakow would be treated to a comfortable home win after the hosts built up a rapid double-figure advantage at 19-8, but Bourges worked hard to cut the gap to single digits heading to the locker rooms at the midway point of the game.
The good work of the visitors continued when they returned to the court, making the defensive adjustments needed to slow down Wisla, and put themselves in a position to perhaps take an unlikely victory.
When Pauline Krawczyk converted from long-distance to tie the game up for Bourges with seven minutes left, the nerves began to jangle in the home crowd.
But, in a tense finale, Cristina Ouvina came up trumps with a score and a free-throw in the last sixty seconds to make the game safe for Wisla, who extend their winning streak a little further, and inflict only the second defeat of the season on Bourges.
Emmeline Ndongue was impressive for the visitors with 13 points, nine rebounds and three steals.
Bourges Basket Head Coach Valerie Garnier
"We were coming to Krakow knowing that Wisla Can-Pack with Tina Charles is not the same team like in the first game. We were not able to stop Charles and Wisla Can-Pack in the first and gave up 42 points..a lot..too much. In the second half we played better defence aginst Charles but we also missed too many shots from the easy positions. Congratulations for Wisla Krakow! Now we have very tough games in front of us in the French League - we must improve many things."
Bourges Basket Player Pauline Krawczyk
"Congrats for the Krakow Team - they are strong and play very good basketball. Like the coach said, we should improve many things. We tried hard to win that game but it was not possible."
Wisla Can-Pack Head Coach Jose Hernandez
"First I am very happy. We had to win that game and we did it. After a very poor start in ELW and 0:3, now we are 4:3. In the last quarter we had problems with free throws losing many - also in the very important last two minutes, so it was nervous.We must work to play more different options on offence, not with Tina Charles only. It will make our shooting possibilities better. On Saturday we play very hard game in the Polish League and then against Gyor in ELW. We want to win both to have a really Merry Christmas. Congrats for Bourges Team for the very good game.
Wisla Can-Pack Player Alana Beard
"The most important thing is that we won that hard game. Like the coach said - there are some things we must improve and we will do that. Thanks to my team mates and thanks to the fans."