By Johnny Askounis/ email@example.com
Eleven years after being relegated, the former FIBA Saporta Cup champion Maroussi will return to Greece’s top-tier division. Winning the second-tier division was attached to an emotional switch between head coach Giorgos Skarafigkas and assistant Vasileia Gouzini, also his wife.
Maroussi secured the promotion to Basket League on Saturday. Apart from the return, winning the Elite League Final Four Semifinal also led to the championship game of the season-ending tournament. Intending to pass the torch, Skarafigkas was ejected with two technical fouls and Gouzini took over head-coaching responsibilities for the last 13 minutes of the game versus Triton played at Ano Liosia Olympic Hall Sunday.
“For those who do not know, Gouzini is my wife. She is not here as my wife but as a very good coach. On the way here, I told her that I would be ejected,” he shared in the postgame press conference.
Carrying previous play-calling experience at Dafni, early in the 2021-22 season of the fourth-tier division of Greece, the 48-year-old former player resurfaced in the championship game of the 2022-23 edition of Elite League and is a probable candidate for concrete stints in the future.
“It all happened very fast, with the head coach being ejected,” she described taking over the head-coaching responsibilities, “I simply continued the work of coach Skarafigkas. I did not deviate from the original plan.”
“When I leave Maroussi, I would like Vasileia to be the next head coach,” Skarafigkas pointed to his potential successor, “She deserves it.”