Minsk dragons grow in strength
Tsmoki Minsk continues among top 16 in EuroChallenge — Europe’s third most important basketball tournament
By Dmitry Baranovsky
Entering the top 16 teams is the highest achievement in the history of Belarusian club basketball and our squad could even reach the next stage, having beaten German Telekom Baskets — 74:70. The match was vital for the Belarusian ‘dragons’, following an earlier defeat by Belgium’s Okapi Aalstars. To continue in Group L, Tsmoki needed to beat the German Bonn team, as they did.
The match against Telekom Baskets began with a spectacular performance by Alexander Kudryavtsev, who gave his team a major burst into the lead. However, the guests quickly ‘recovered’ and, by the middle of the fourth quarter, had closed the gap, which had reached 14 points by that time. However, Tsmoki stood firm and, in the dramatic final, won on penalty shots.
This success has enabled the Belarusian squad to remain in the fight for a place in the next round, moving into second position. The most interesting time still lies ahead as the Minsk team moves forward from its Okapi Aalstars defeat.