Croatia Basketball Gathers for Final World Cup Qualifiers: “We Must Hope for Best”

Daniela Rogulj

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In the Zagreb hotel Panorama, the Croatia basketball team gathered to continue their qualifications for the World Cup. Croatia will play against Poland in Varaždin on February 22, while three days later, Croatia will play against Hungary, reports on February 18, 2019. 

The team immediately hit the road to Sveti Martin for their quick preparations, for which Dražen Anzulović called up 16 players.

Two rounds before the end of the qualifications, Croatia is in an almost hopeless position. Croatia currently holds the fifth place in the group with 14 points, though only the first three teams advance to the 2019 World Cup in China. Croatia can qualify for the competition only if they win both of their games and if Poland loses to the Netherlands, the last placed team, in the final round.

“Everyone who is here, I’m sure, will give it their all, and that is how we will train and work to be ready for the games. As far as Poland is concerned, I’ve talked about it before, I know all the players, and I respect their quality, but I’m sure we will play much better than we did in Poland,” said Dražen Anzulovic. 

The new captain of the team, Hrvoje Perić, added: 

“It makes no sense to give some pompous statements. I’m glad to be here; I see the team is much younger than we would be otherwise and we are going to prepare with our maximum, give everything of ourselves, and hope for the best.”

The match against Poland is scheduled on February 22 in Varaždin, after which the team will travel to Szombathely where they will play Hungary on February 25th at 18:30 for the last qualifying game for the World Cup. 

Lithuania is currently first place in the group with 19 points, followed by Italy with 17, Poland with 16, Hungary with 15, Croatia with 14, and the Netherlands with 13 points.

To read more about sport in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page


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