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European Championship qualification: Basketball players embarrass themselves in Bulgaria

Sport European Championship qualification

Basketball players embarrass themselves in Bulgaria

Status: 25.02.2024 | Reading time: 3 minutes

Catastrophic throwing rate: Christian Sengfelder, Jonas Wohlfarth-Bottermann and Jan-Niklas Wimberg (from left)

Source: dpa/Matthias Stickel

The German basketball players are having a really bad day in Bulgaria. Nothing worked for the team, which was severely weakened in terms of replacements, against the outsiders. However, European Championship qualification should not be in danger.

The German basketball players embarrassed themselves in the European Championship qualification and suffered their first defeat. With only one world champion, national coach Gordon Herbert’s team surprisingly lost 62:67 (27:28) in Bulgaria on Sunday. At the start of the qualification, the German Basketball Association team clearly won 85:61 against Montenegro in Ludwigsburg on Thursday.

In Bulgaria, which lost in Sweden on the first day of the match, the German team put in a very poor performance. The team only showed its potential in the first quarter and won the first ten minutes with a score of 19:7. But then Germany completely lost their rhythm and made a lot of easy mistakes. Bulgaria took advantage of this, turned the game around and caused a surprise. 21 ball losses and a catastrophic field throw rate of less than 30 percent were the decisive factors for the German defeat.

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“We no longer had any rhythm on offense after the first five minutes. “We lost too many easy balls,” said a disappointed Herbert.

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Quelle: dpa/Daniel Reinhardt

Despite the loud crowd in the Arena Botevgrad, the national coach expected more from his team. “Perhaps some of them went off a bit because of the atmosphere,” criticized Herbert.

David Krämer is the only world champion there

However, Germany’s participation in the European Championship is still far from being threatened. The first three teams in the group of four will qualify for the European Championships in Finland, Latvia, Poland and Cyprus next year. The qualification continues in November. Before that, the Olympic Games are coming up in Paris in the summer. Then Schröder and Co. will be there again. In Botevgrad, Bulgaria, Oscar da Silva from FC Barcelona was the best scorer in the German team with 15 points.

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As against Montenegro, Herbert had to do without almost all of the world champions in Bulgaria. Of the heroes from Manila, only David Krämer was in the squad. Dennis Schröder and colleagues are either busy in the NBA or were given a break by the national coach with a view to the Olympic Games in the summer.

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But even without the stars, Germany got off to a very good start, as they did against Montenegro. The first quarter went to the guests, also because Alba Berlin’s Jonas Mattisseck convinced with eight points. But then the German team, which had to do without Nick Weiler-Babb due to a personal bereavement, probably felt too safe. The Herbert team made many simple mistakes and lacked intensity in defense.

The Bulgarians took advantage of this and were suddenly ahead 28:27 at the break. Even after the break, the German team continued to have a very difficult time. Unlike against Montenegro, the world champion did not find any rhythm offensively. At least the effort was right and Germany went into the final quarter with a six-point lead (45:39). But it was quickly gone again. The shooting rate fell even further, Bulgaria took the lead again and saved the lead over time.

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