Estonia Stay Alive, Serbia Face Decider

08.09.2012

EURIBASKET QUALIFIERS

11. Siim-Sander Vene (Estonia)
Siim-Sander Vene produced a 15-point, 10-rebound double-double against Serbia to help Estonia stay in the hunt for a spot at EuroBasket 2013

Estonia stayed in the hunt for a EuroBasket place with an 88-81 win over Serbia on Saturday night.

The Baltic side got 19 points from Kristjan Kangur and as a team had 23 assists to just five for their opponents.

The result has left both sides with 5-4 records in Qualification Round Group A.

Serbia can still clinch a spot in the Final Round but now they need to defeat Israel in their last game on Tuesday, unless Estonia lose to Iceland and results elsewhere allow them to qualify with a 5-5 record.

Estonia, meanwhile, can still dream of playing in Slovenia.

They must win their last game against Iceland and hope that Israel prevail over Serbia in the Belgrade game.

In this case, Estonia would finish third in Group A at 6-4, just behind Israel, and after Saturday's results elsewhere in the Qualification Round this would be enough to make them one of the four best third-place teams and qualify to EuroBasket 2013.

In Saturday's clash, Serbia did lead by eight points late in the second quarter but Estonia reeled them back in and trailed 43-41 at half-time.

The key run in the contest for Estonia started when the contest was level at 68-68 2:15 into the last frame.

Gregor Arbet, Sten Sokk, Kangur, Siim-Sander Vene and Sokk again all scored in a 10-0 run that put them on top 78-68 with 4:02 remaining.

Serbia got to within five points but no closer the rest of the way.

Nenad Krstic finished with 20 points and nine rebounds for Serbia.

 


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