Brits' Last Chance Against Croatia

22 June 2013

EUROBASKET WOMEN 2013

Johannah Leedham (Great Britain)
"We haven't done our country proud yet" - Johannah Leedham

By Joe Hewison

Already-eliminated Croatia stand in the way of a Great Britain side that need to win and hope other results go their way in order to reach the quarter-finals.

In addition to winning, Great Britain will be supporting the Czech Republic in the day's earlier game. Should Serbia defeat the Czechs, then Great Britain's fate will already be sealed before they tip-off.

Last Time Out: Croatia were out-worked and out-thought by Serbia who beat them 77-64 while Great Britain couldn't match Belarus' fourth quarter step up in intensity and fell 71-61.

Key Match-Up: Chantelle Handy's impact on the play of Great Britain continues to grow and generally, when she has a good game, so do her team. Ana Lelas has been one of the few Croatian players to perform to her expected level in France and they could match-up at the three spot.

Key Stat: Of the teams to have played in the second round, Great Britain (19.2 per-game) and Croatia (17.4 per-game) rank second and third for the highest number of turnovers.

X-Factor: Already having been eliminated from the tournament could see Croatia respond in one of two ways. They may emerge with a lack of motivation and drive that Great Britain could exploit, alternatively, the fact that nothing is riding on this game may take the pressure off and allow them to play without fear and limit their mistakes.

From The Camps:

Great Britain guard Johannah Leedham said: "We have got to come out and put our foot on their throat and we have got to play our brand of basketball.

"We have got to take these two losses to heart. We haven't done our country proud yet, not 100% and we have one last chance to do it and for me, I take responsibility for Sunday. We have got to go out there and play for our country.

"This is our last chance. We might never get to another EuroBasket [Women] so we need to start playing like that."

After the defeat to Serbia, Croatia player Matea Vrdoljak stressed the importance of sticking to the gameplan.

She said: "We were supposed to pass, pass, pass but we didn't do it. That was our mistake, we took too many dribbles, sometimes it was working sometimes not but that, and too many turnovers, were our mistakes."


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