'Attractive' Neighbours Meet In Group C

04 February 2014

EUROBASKET 2015 2QR

13. Samy Picard (Luxembourg)
Luxembourg and Germany are familiar foes, previously meeting in the Qualification Round for EuroBasket 2013

The four teams that were drawn in Group C will have to cover less distance than any other participant in EuroBasket 2015 2nd Qualification Round and certainly seem to appreciate the familiarity factor.

Germany, Poland, Austria and Luxembourg were all pleased with the prospect of short trips next summer and all characterised their opponents as 'attractive' teams, in the aftermath of the Monday draw that pitted the four central European nations together.

Polish Basketball Federation (PZKosz) president Grzegorz Bachański set the tone immediately after the draw in Barcelona, even relishing the possibility of Poland going up against one of the biggest European stars of all time when they take on Germany on 10 and 20 August.

"I think it was a good draw for our team and Germany are a demanding and attractive rival," Bachański said.

"I spoke with the president of the German Basketball Federation, Ingo Weiss, and you should not rule out the possibility that Dirk Nowitzki takes part in the Qualification Round.

"It would be a great opportunity for Polish fans to see an NBA star battling it out with our White-Reds.

"It promises to be an interesting summer for Polish basketball and I am also glad that we are in a group with three opponents, because it means more games."

"Our main aim of course is to qualify for EuroBasket 2015."

The German Federation president from his part did not comment on Nowitzki's intentions this summer, but used the exact same word in reference to Germany's Group C rivals.

"We can for sure be satisfied with the result of the draw, we have attractive, but also beatable opponents," Weiss said.

"The EuroBasket Qualification Round is a very high priority for us.

"It enables our numerous basketball fans to watch and support the German team in major competitive games in own own country."

Werner Sallomon, Austria
"We got a tough draw with attractive opponents" - Werner Sallomon, Austrian head coach

The man responsible for steering the German national team through the Qualification Round campaign held a similar view.

"Poland is an attractive and strong opponent and the first game [in the group] will already be pointing the direction it will take," commented Germany head coach Frank Menz.

"We must not underestimate Austria in international basketball while Luxembourg, on the other hand, may not pose a problem to our team.

"It could have been more difficult, so we are full of confidence in the qualification campaign.

"This group gives us every chance, even though it certainly is not an easy task."

The reaction of Austria head coach Werner Sallomon was along the same lines.

"We got a tough draw with attractive opponents," Sallomon said.

"We will try to make the best of it."

Meanwhile the Basketball Federation of Luxembourg also focused on the familiarity factor in a short statement, pointing out that the national team coached by head coach Franck Meriguet will meet neighbouring Germany for the second time in two years.

Luxembourg had faced Germany on two occasions during the Qualification Round for EuroBasket 2013, losing both games.

Both Luxembourg and Austria participated in the 1st Qualification Round for EuroBasket 2015 last summer, while Germany and Poland took part at EuroBasket 2013 in Slovenia but failed to advance past the First Round.

The EuroBasket 2015 2nd Qualification Round tips off on 10 August and concludes on 27 August.


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