|Cecilia Zandalasini wasted little time in showing her full array of skills on Day 1 action|
There was joy for Italy on the opening day of the U18 European Championship Women in Matosinhos as they claimed a hard-fought 70-60 success against Czech Republic in Group D.
Turning Point: Italy cranked up their defence with just under five minutes remaining of the contest and it put them back onto the front foot. They held the Czech team to just one further score to finish with eight of the last ten points in the game.
Game Hero: The all-action Marzia Tagliamento was at the heart of everything good about Italy and claimed 18 points, six rebounds and four steals. Alessia Cabrini supplied a perfect cameo with a smart 10 point haul.
Stats Don't Lie: It's difficult to imagine winning many games when you commit an eye-watering 29 turnovers and that put a hole in Czech prospects. The Italian defence came up with a majestic 21 steals in contrast.
The Bottom Line: Italy will be relieved to have claimed a first day triumph in one of those games when their opponents refused to go away until the closing minutes. They may have decisions to make over how much of their play goes through their standout Cecilia Zandalasini and getting the best balance. Czech coach Jiri Barta will be asking his team to take better care of the ball and there were some positives.