08/02/1998 21:19:14 Basketball-Yugoslavia, Russia send chill warnings at worlds
Обновлено: 3 авг. 2018 г.
By Dave Thompson
ATHENS, Aug 2 (Reuters) - Yugoslavia and Russia sent chill warnings across
the warm Athens night with two great performances at the world basketball
championship on Sunday.
Yugoslavia, who won the title in 1990, crushed Canada 95-55, the biggest
margin at the tournament to date. Then Russia beat Italy 71-55 in an excellent
Young Yugoslav guard Miroslav Beric top-scored for his team with 13 points
but it was an all-round effort.
"We had perfect concentration tonight and managed to confine their guards,"
Yugoslav coach Zeljko Obradovic said.
"We simply couldn't stop them. They have a very good team," observed
Canadian counterpart Steve Kochalski.
Russian guard Sergei Babkov notched an impressive 26 points as Italy
eventually succumbed to the onslaught.
Victories in the second round group matches kept both sides firmly on course
for quarter-final slots.
The Yugoslavs remain unbeatean and now face Italy and Greece in second round
action. Russia, whose only loss came in a tense first round match against
Yugoslavia, meet Greece and then Canada.
The Greeks kept their unbeaten record, defeating Puerto Rico 71-64, and
Spain are also four out of four after overcoming Brazil 73-63.
The non-NBA American squad made it two wins from their last two games when
they beat Argentina 87-74, 34-year-old Wendell Alexis leading the way with 20
And it was another veteran, 33-year-old Australian Andrew Gaze, who stole
the show against Lithuania, Olympic bronze medallists for the last two years.
His 24 points lifted Australia to a well-earned 71-61 victory and back into
contention for a place in the last eight.