By Johnny Askounis/ firstname.lastname@example.org
Following the trip to Perm and the loss to Russia Thursday night, Basketball Nederland, the governing body of basketball in the Netherlands, released a statement about the 2023 FIBA World Cup European Qualifiers Gameday 3 fixture and also made intentions clear ahead of the reverse game, included in the Gameday 4 schedule and previously set to be held Sunday at Almere.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine took place after the Netherlands senior national team arrived at its destination. The team was prepared to play versus Russia and ultimately decided to do so, after carefully considering all available options to safeguard the safety of players and members of the coaching staff. It was the best solution for the national team already in Russia and wanting to return home safely, as noted in the press release.
Basketball Nederland went on to explain how difficult it became for the players and staff members to stay focused after the decision to play against Russia.
The Netherlands Basketball Federation took a clear stand regarding the reverse fixture refusing to host Russia at Almere on Sunday. Pending FIBA’s decision, the game is certainly not expected to take place according to the original schedule.
The Netherlands national team lost, 80-69, to Russia in Perm falling to 0-3 in Group H of the ongoing stage of the European Qualifiers. According to the format currently in use, the top three sides of the four-team group will advance to the next round, and from there attempt to clinch a berth to the final stage of the World Cup.
Photo Credit: FIBA.BASKETBALL