Basketball Team Beats Belarus, Bulgaria Next
The Estonian national basketball team brought the nation positive news on Sunday evening, beating Belarus by 18 points to move to the finals of a qualifying tournament for the 2015 European Championships.
Estonia lost by six points in the first leg in Belarus on Thursday, but won convincingly 79:61 in Tallinn yesterday.
The home team started well, dominating and taking advantage of the home court, but a strong reaction from Belarus had decreased Estonia's lead to 19:17 by the end of the first quarter.
The second quarter would have been happier for Estonia had the away team not scored at the final buzzer of the second round, making it 37:31.
Gregor Arbet achieved a similar, but more effective feat at the end of the next quarter to put Estonia up by ten points. Click here to view the shot.
The home side refused to let go of in the final quarter, building their lead to 18 points.
“The Estonians' defense put so much pressure on our attack that we could not build up our game. Of course the public was the main factor - we all prefer to play in front of a large audience,” Martin Müürsepp, the Belarus's assistant coach and one of the all-time greats of Estonian basketball, told Delfi on Sunday, adding that only 800 turned up for the game in Belarus, while 6,000 watched the match live in Tallinn.
Estonia's next and final opponent in the qualifiers is Bulgaria, who defeated Switzerland 92:71 and 87:67 in two matches.