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Gasol On A High Ahead Of EuroCup Trip

27 November 2006

Akasvayu Girona center Marc Gasol will go into Wednesday's EuroCup match against BC Siauliai on the back of an award-winning display in the ACB this weekend.

Gasol, gold medalist with Spain at this summer's FIBA World Championship, was named the best home-grown player of the ACB's 10th week after helping Akasvayu down Polaris World CB Murcia 80-73 on Sunday.

He led all-scorers with 19 points after downing all 13 of his attempted shots on the night, while he also pulled down five rebounds.

Although it was not enough to pip CB Granada's American center Curtis Borchardt to the overall MVP award for the week, Gasol's performance did help fourth-placed Akasvayu move onto 7-3 for the season.

It also set them up nicely for their EuroCup trip to Lithuania, where they will be looking to make it four victorious out of four in Group D.

Spain's other EuroCup side Estudiantes - who Akasvayu face in the ACB next weekend - are also seeking to continue their 100% record in the competition when they play CSU Asesoft Ploiesti on Tuesday.

Unlike Akasvayu though, Estu have been stuttering on the domestic front and this weekend suffered their fourth defeat of the season after going down 78-67 at lowly Lagun Aro Bilbao Basket.

Estu claimed a 97-89 victory over Asesoft in their opening EuroCup match, and the Madrid club's forward-center Viktor Sanikidze is hoping for a repeat showing on Tuesday.

"We had a good game in Romania. It was the first game in the European competition and we were very focused, knowing the importance of going far away from your city and gaining a victory," he said on his club's website.

"I think it was a very important result and I hope that we can repeat the win, although it will not be easy.

"They might seem an unknown team but they have good players," he added, singling out Sasa Ocokoljic and Reggie Elliot.

Even though Asesoft have lost all three of their EuroCup matches so far, Ocokoljic is averaging more than 21 points per game, while Elliot is contributing just over 11 points as well as handing out the most assists from his side (11).

"They have two players who are very important to them. Elliot and Ocokoljic are the players who lead all their attacks," Sanikidze said.

"If we are to restrain these two players and control the rebounds, we will have the chance to win. 

"In addition to that, we have been hurt by the defeat in the ACB against Lagun Aro Bilbao and we want to gain the victory to prepare well for the game against Akasvayu Girona."

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