|Host City: Kayseri|
|Host City: Istanbul|
|Host City: Ankara|
|5. Puerto Rico||1/4||6|
|6. Cote d'Ivoire||1/4||6|
|Host City: Izmir|
|3. New Zealand||3/2||8|
|#||Name||P||Height||DOB||Place Of Birth||Club|
|14/05/1983||Ljubljana, Slovenia||Montepaschi Siena, Lega A (ITA)|
|09/07/1978||Ljubljana, Slovenia||FC Barcelona, ACB (ESP)|
|18/01/1984||Zenica, Bosnia and Herzegovina||Unics Kazan, Superleague A (RUS)|
|19/05/1981||Maribor, Slovenia||Union Ljubljana, 1. A SKL (SLO)|
|19/08/1987||Novo Mesto, Slovenia||Partizan, KLS (SRB)|
|02/08/1979||Celje, Slovenia||Estudiantes, ACB (ESP)|
|03/07/1980||Slovenj Gradec, Slovenia||Efes Pilsen, TBL (TUR)|
|06/05/1986||Ljubljana, Slovenia||Phoenix Suns, NBA (USA)|
|23/05/1974||Koper, Slovenia||Vršac, KLS (SRB)|
|13/09/1982||Kranj, Slovenia||St. Petersburg, Superleague A (RUS)|
|14/09/1987||Ljubljana, Slovenia||Fenerbahçe Ülker, TBL (TUR)|
|02/10/1979||Postojna, Slovenia||Milwaukee Bucks, NBA (USA)|
ISTANBUL (FIBA World Championship) – Slovenia have barely raised a sweat in disposing of Australia
87-58 in the Eight Finals at the FIBA World Championship.
It was an ominous performance by the fourth placed team from last year’s Eurobasket, and they did it thanks to a full board of contributors highlighted by Jaka Lakovic, who had 11 first half points on his way to 19 for the game. Primoz Brezec (12 points) and Goran Dragic (10 points) led the rest.
Australia itself has been suffering a long period of drought and it carried onto the basketball court in the first quarter, Slovenia leading 12-0 after nearly seven minutes. While Australia made a brief 6-0 run through Matt Nielsen and Patrick Mills, the quarter time score was 16-8.
When Lakovic and Sani Becirovic started the second quarter with consecutive triples the margin was 14, but worse was to come for Australia. The Boomers shot just 6/27 and gave up 9 turnovers for the half, and when Lakovic capped a 10-3 run with a three-pointer leading into half time the score was 42-21.
The second half was a more even affair but the game had long been decided. Slovenia won the third quarter 29-24, and the final term 16-13.
It was Australia’s largest defeat at a FIBA World Championship against an opponent not named the USA or the USSR. For the Boomers only Mills, Nielsen and Joe Ingles made it into double figures.
Slovenia now face the winner of the Turkey v France game in the FIBA World Championship Quarter Finals.
Slovenia guard Goran Dragic: "It's a fantastic feeling to have made it to the Quarter-Finals of the competition. We have worked so hard to arrive here and I think we did a great job today. We came out very strong, executed well and kept our focus from start to finish."
Australia captain Matthew Nielsen: "Slovenia are very strong and they proved that today. They executed very well and our execution was terrible. Having said that, I don't think we are far off from Slovenia's level which might sound a ridiculous comment to make today. But we are without several players and we can play much better than this, we just didn't show it today."
|Min||Minutes played||Tot||Total rebounds||BS||Block Shots|
|%||Shooting percentage||PF||Personal fouls||G||Played Games|
The Slovenian National Team is going to have to find the answer to this question in order to succeed: is it possible to replace the Lorbek brothers? Difficult - but not impossible.
In Poland last year, Erazem Lorbek (16.4 points 52.4% shooting and 7.4 rebounds) was the second best inside player in the tournament after MVP and champion Pau Gasol. He carried his team throughout the competition, displaying a unique set of offensive skills. His brother, Domen was not so impressive on the statistical sheets but he brought defense and a lot of spirit to the team.
In Turkey, head coach Mehmed Becirovic, a rookie at the international level, won’t have the Lorbek brothers to guide the team. Add to that the absence of influential leader Matjaz Smodis, who was injured all season.
The biggest challenge for Slovenia then is to find someone to replace Lorbek and Smodis in the paint. Uros Slokar now has the experience and the shooting range to be a good power-forward. With Primoz Brezec at centre, the starting five is going to hold its ground. On the bench, Becirovic will have to count on a new generation of big guys – Gasper Vidmar and Hasan Rivzic. .
On the perimeter however, Slovenia is going to be very dangerous. Firstly, it would probably be a good idea to try playing Jaka Lakovic and Goran Dragic at the same time on the court. Dragic can fill the shooting guard position and defend stronger guards. The creativity, experience and shooting abilities of those two would create a terrible threat in offence for opponents.
Slovenia were dealt a blow during their preparations for the FIBA World Championship when guard Beno Udrih quit the National Team’s training camp because he was unhappy at being asked to back up Lakovic. This will likely open up more playing time for coach Becirovic’s son Sani as well as Beno’s brother Samo or even Dragic’s kid brother Zoran.
Even without Beno, the Slovenian guards can compete with just about any team. They are not very tall, but it would not be too much of a problem because the forwards on the team have great size for their position.
Over the years, Bostjan Nachbar has developed as one of the best forwards in the FIBA game, and on the bench, the old warrior Goran Jagodnik is also tall and a good shooter. With the Dragic brothers, coach Becirovic might be able to overcome the absence of the ‘Lorbek Bros’! In Slovenia, a small country of two millions inhabitants, basketball is a family thing!
|2006||U20 European Championship Men DIVISION A||3rd|
|2004||European Championship for Men U20||1st|
|2002||European Championship for Junior Men||2nd|
|2000||European Championship for Young Men||1st|
|1999||European Youth Olympic Days Basketball Tournament for Junior Men||3rd|
|1998||European Championship for Men '22 and Under'||2nd|
Head coach: Memi BECIROVIC