|14 August 2012|
|Germany point guard Per Günther was rested in the last friendly against Georgia, but will feature in Saturday's opener with Luxembourg |
Several teams warming up for the EuroBasket Qualification Round are putting the finishing touches on their preparations.
Germany defeated Georgia 68-57 in Leipzig on Monday with Jan-Hendrik Jagla scoring 16 points.
The Germans had prevailed in the Beko SuperCup over the weekend against Finland and Poland.
Svetislav Pesic, the coach of the Germans, said: "This was the third game in three days and we have again shown a great attitude.
"Again, we have focused our efforts on the defense and played against an opponent with great offensive power.
"We are now a bit tired, but I am encouraged by the enthusiasm shown by the players. There are now important for the German basketball games and we are well prepared."
German point guard Per Gunther rested against Georgia but will be available for the qualifiers.
Germany begin their Group B Qualification Round campaign against Luxembourg in Haven (Germany) on 18 August while Georgia will go up against Romania in Tbilisi on Saturday.
Italy Ready For ‘Must-Win' Home Game
Meanwhile, Italy coach Simone Pianigiani has led the Azzurri in their last training and is optimistic ahead of Wednesday's qualifier against Portugal in Sassari, Sardinia.
"Portugal is a team that has done well in their friendlies," Pianigiani said.
|Italy head coach Simone Pianigiani is concerned with the tempo of the game against Portugal, but warns the only acceptable result is victory |
"It's clear that if we want to play at EuroBasket 2013 a game against Portugal at home is a must win.
"We cannot allow them to dictate the tempo because they have players that can create problems on a one-on-one situations.
"They shoot well from three-point range. They don't have much size but we also lack size and strength with respect to the top teams and that is why we have to make home court count as well as our basketball knowledge.
"We want to take that step up in Europe and that is why we must win this game at all costs."
One of the players in the Italian squad is veteran Angelo Gigli.
Gigli said: "We have played so many friendlies but now the important games begin and although we are in a positive frame of mind, we have to wait and see after our first game where we are.
"We still have things to improve on like holding possession, making less turnovers and not allowing rivals to get back in the game when we are leading.
"We have a great group.
"Everyone is giving their best and that really helps. We cannot underestimate Portugal. The opening game is the most difficult one. Portugal will come here with nothing to lose and we can expect a battle."
It is unclear whether Danilo Gallinari, who has not featured for the Azzurri in any of their preparation games this summer, will play against Portugal because of a back problem.