Georgia is Belgium’s 1st European Championship opponent: 3 towers over 2.10m await the Lions | European Basketball Championship

Georgia is Belgium’s 1st European Championship opponent: 3 towers over 2.10m await the Lions | European Basketball Championship
Georgia is Belgium’s 1st European Championship opponent: 3 towers over 2.10m await the Lions | European Basketball Championship

Based on the FIBA ​​ranking, Georgia and Belgium should be evenly matched. Georgia is the number 36 in the worldthe Belgian Lions are one step lower at 37.

As one of the 4th host countries, Georgia was already certain of a European Championship ticket, but still played in the preliminaries to maintain competition rhythm. It became 2nd in a group with Serbia, Switzerland and Finland.

Georgia can call on 2 NBA players this European Championship: Goga Bitadze and Sandro Mamukelashvili. The 23-year-old Bitadze has been playing with the Indiana Pacers since 2019 and last season averaged 7 points and 3.5 rebounds in 50 games.

age mate Sandro Mamukelashvili completed his first season with the Milwaukee Bucks, appearing in 41 games. He scored an average of 3.8 points per match.

Bitadze (2.13 m) and Mamukelashvili (2.11 m) significantly increase the average height of Georgia and then the 33-year-old veteran is Giorgi Shermadinic with 2.16 cm even a few centimeters larger.

The 3 Georgian rooks are expected to face off together this European Championship, with Shermadini under the boards and Bitadze and Mamukelashvili in the forward positions. Both NBA players also have a good three-pointer and can therefore be dangerous both under the ring and from a distance.

Add to that the class of the naturalized American guard Thaddus McFadden – tried and tested with some Spanish top players – and the Georgian public that will rally behind the team in Tbilisi and you know that Belgium will have a tough chunk to choose from tonight.

Georgia had its best European Championship result in 2011, when it came 11th, but the public expects their team to do a lot better this year.

The Georgian squad looks stronger than evereven without the injured captain Tornike Shengelia, once again with Pepinster and Charleroi.

The naturalized McFadden has already aged 35 and the strong Shermadini is getting older at 33. If they still want to take advantage of the momentum of NBA colleagues Bitadze and Mamukelashvili, this might be their last chance.

If Georgia can handle the pressure of the host country and everyone stays fit, it has a core that can make life miserable for many countries.

The only disadvantage for Georgia: the final phase of the tournament no longer takes place in Tbilisi, but in Berlin. There, the Georgians will have to show that they can do it without the massive support of their fans. If Georgia succeeds in this, it may well be be one of the surprises at this European Championship.

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