|03 September 2012|
|Israel captain Yotam Halperin says his team are entering a 'fateful' week in which they not only have to win, but also keep an eye on results elsewhere|
Israel's basketball team is experiencing the full range of emotions as it tries to book a place at next year's EuroBasket in Slovenia.
One day, they clinch a vital home win against Serbia to improve to 3-3 in Qualification Round Group A, but the next time out they fall at home to Montenegro.
With their backs against the wall, Israel travelled to Tallinn and on Sunday won 84-53 over Estonia, a side that had won the first encounter between the sides.
There is no time to rest and relax, though.
Israel, Serbia and Estonia each have 4-3 records behind Montenegro (7-0), who qualified for the Final Round on Sunday.
"We had a great game for 40 minutes (against Estonia)," Israel captain Yotam Halperin said.
"Victory was very important for us and I'm glad we claimed it by a big margin."
Estonia had won the first clash with Israel, 88-86, so the latter now have the advantage in a potential tie-breaker.
"Well done to the coaching staff and all the players," Halperin said.
"Now, we're going into fateful week with two home games against Iceland on Wednesday and Slovakia on Saturday and we have to win both.
"Other than those two games, we'll be keeping an eye on other results as well hoping for good news."
Serbia are also in a dogfight to claim one of the top two places in Group A.
There is also the possibility that the third place will be good enough to earn a place in Slovenia.
The four best third-place teams in the six groups will compete in the Final Round.
Serbia simply are not executing during games, according to coach Dusan Ivkovic.
"We lost control (against Montenegro)," Ivkovic said, "making many mistakes.
"We had as many as 19 turnovers and only four steals.
"We need to draw lessons from this defeat."
Ivkovic is in fighting mood.
"We're ready for the next games, two of which we play in Serbia (against the Slovak Republic and Israel) and one in Tallinn against Estonia," he said.
"Our biggest problem is the volatility and instability in the game.
"We have to be stronger than all the problems (injuries) and claim victories in the remaining matches to reach the goal."