After narrowly losing to Hungary in the Preliminary Round games, the Czech Republic were determined that there would be no repeat of that this afternoon. For almost 30 minutes the game could have gone either way but Hungary lacked their top scorer Anna Vajda (15 points, 5 rebounds) when they needed her most and the Czechs turned it to their complete advantage in the latter stages.
It was only after a long hard slog that Russia could claim victory this evening in the first Semi-Final of the Eural Trans Gas European Championship for U20 Women. In a game reminiscent of the Semi-Final of the U18 Championship 2 years ago, Czech Republic were not able this time to exact revenge for the defeat in 2002 and Russia again finished on top.
The Slovaks very nearly pulled off the first upset of the Quarter-Finals by surprising their Czech cousins and making them fight for every basket right into the final minutes. The Czechs finished first in Group B and the Slovaks 4th in Group A, but the Slovak Rep. players were in no way intimidated and came out ready to give everything.
Finland 49 – Russia 81
Thanks to Russia’s loss yesterday to Ukraine, this game was do-or-die for both teams as a win handed the victor the last Quarter-Final place from Group A. Finland were still on an up after a great show against Slovak Republic but after the first 10 minutes today already started to look a little tired. Russia, however, looked in great shape, the key players having not played a lot of minutes against Ukraine.
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