Basketball: EM chance for Austria only theoretically


For Austria’s basketball men, the train to the European Championship has probably left again. A 67:70 against Ukraine on Monday in the “bubble” in Ljubljana meant that the ÖBV selection in Group F of the qualification remained without a win. The chance of reaching a final round for the first time since 1977 is only theoretical.

Four games, four defeats, is the sobering result: On Monday evening, of course, a great opportunity was missed. The opponent from Eastern Europe made no less than 27 ball losses, 16 of them before the break. But the Austrians, who only had to go back on the floor a little more than 19 hours after the final siren of the game against Slovenia, didn’t know what to do with that.

Bad record

In addition, there was a free throw yield of only 57.7 percent (15/26). Bogic Vujosevic alone missed three times off the line in the last two minutes of the game. It was bad luck that a three-point attempt by the guard landed at the ring shortly before the end. A hit would have equalized.

It will be little consolation for team captain Thomas Schreiner that he is the second player after Rasid Mahalbasic to have four-digit scores in the ÖBV selection. His four points on Monday mean he holds 1,001 points. To win games like the one on Monday, you need “one more step,” said the captain.

ÖBV team boss Raoul Korner saw a “big step forward” despite the recent defeat and the only theoretical chance of getting an EM ticket. His team had more possession, but made too little of it. In addition, simple points were awarded. “Ukraine was a bit callous,” said Korner in the press conference after the game.

Qualification for Austria will end in February 2021 with two more games. The opponent is then the selection of Hungary, which holds two wins from as many encounters and had to leave Ljubljana prematurely due to several corona cases in the team. Slovenia and Ukraine have qualified for the European Championship after their victories against the ÖBV team in Ljubljana.

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