|02 September 2013|
|Milos Teodosic has only missed one summer with the national team since the age of 12 but is now going to be forced to miss his second due to injury|
Serbia waited on both players until the last possible moment, but in the end neither star point guard Milos Teodosic nor young forward Vladimir Lucic will step on the court at EuroBasket 2013.
Teodosic travelled to Russia over the weekend and was submitted to tests by CSKA Moscow's medical team.
"They told me that I need another month of undergoing treatment and only after that can I slowly start to play," he said.
The 26-year-old playmaker sustained a calf injury during CSKA Moscow's last game of the club season and only joined Serbia in practice last week, without being included in the squad for any of their preparation games.
"I'm really very sorry that I cannot go with the team," an extremely disappointed Teodosic said.
"Ever since I was 12, I have spent every summer with the national team, with the only exception of 2006, when I did not make the team for the U20 European Championship.
"From my part, I really gave everything I could and I would like to heartily thank the doctors of the national team who invested a lot of time and effort in my recovery.
"If it was not for them, I would not be in the state of fitness in which I am now, and that means I'm very close, but just not entirely ready to play at EuroBasket."
Lucic on the other hand missed a big part of Serbia's preparations due to back pains and admitted on Sunday that he already knew since the friendly tournament in France in mid-August that he would be unable to play at EuroBasket, but was hoping to see a last-minute improvement.
Serbia head coach Dusan Ivkovic had never hidden his desire to have both players on board for the EuroBasket, but tried to see the positive side of things upon his team's departure for Slovenia.
"We have concluded our preparation schedule successfully, working in a good atmosphere, and that was our goal," Ivkovic said.
"Knowing the problems we had since the beginning of preparations, we knew that we should be more prepared than others in order to achieve a competitive result.
"Unfortunately we will be without Milos and Vladimir, which means that we will take it from game to game.
"The guys so far have shown unity and team spirit, which are essential in basketball."
Serbia's final roster for EuroBasket 2013 is made up of Nenad Krstic, Nemanja Krstic, Bogdan Bogdanovic, Nemanja Bjelica, Stefan Markovic, Danilo Andjusic, Rasko Katic, Vladimir Stimac, Vasilje Micic, Nemanja Nedovic, Djordje Gagic and Nikola Kalinic.
The Balkan side are facing tournament favourites Lithuania in their opener on Wednesday, and will then take on Bosnia and Herzegovina, F.Y.R. Of Macedonia, Latvia and finally Montenegro in their effort to secure a top-three finish in First Round Group B.