Poland’s rivals in group D, apart from Israel, which is ranked 43 in the FIBA world ranking (and 22nd in Europe), will be Germany, participants of the Tokyo Olympics (11th FIBA, 9th in Europe) and Estonia (49th FIBA, 26th in Europe). ).
The championships will be held in Japan, Indonesia and the Philippines (there will be a group and finals in Manila). In the first stage of the European qualifiers, eight groups of four (AH) were created. The competition with the peer-to-peer system will start on November 25-29 and will end in July 2022 (“three windows” in the calendar).
The three best teams from each will advance to the next stage. In the second phase, 24 teams will play in four groups (IL, formed from the combination of AB, CD, EF, GH), six teams each, with the results from the first stage with the teams fighting further). “Poland” group D will join the teams from group D C (Slovenia, Croatia, Finland and Sweden). The competition will run from August 2022 to February 2023 in three windows. 12 national teams from Europe will be promoted to the world championships. A total of 32 teams will play in the World Cup.
The Polish team, who did not find any rival from the first, strongest basket (Spain, Slovenia, France and Serbia) during the draw, are in the high 13th position in the FIBA ranking, 10th in Europe. This is the result of a very successful performance at the 2019 World Cup in China, where the team led by coach Mike Taylor took eighth place, participating in the final tournament for the first time in 52 years (in Uruguay in 1967, the team of coach Witold Zagórski won fifth place).
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In October, Taylor, by decision of the PZKosz authorities, was replaced by a Croat of Polish citizenship, Igor Milicić, who is also the coach of the Polish champion Arged BM Slam Stal Ostrów Wlkp. Warsaw. Until now, Marek Popiołek, who held this position, became one of the assistants of the new manager.
Milicić has rejuvenated the squad, and the oldest basketball player in the team preparing for the elimination is 29-year-old Jarosław Zyskowski, the son of the former representative also Jarosław.
Many teams, including world champion Spain. In its lineup, only one player who enjoyed the gold medal of the world championship in China in 2019 – 33-year-old Quino Colom, who became the captain. The Spaniards do not include the Gasol brothers – Pau and Marc, who ended their national career, but also basketball players from the NBA (including Ricky Rubio, the best player at the 2019 World Cup).
Several other national teams will have to cope without NBA players, incl. France, Lithuania or Germany. In addition, in the Thursday and Friday inaugural matches, the majority of the team will not play in the teams of the Euroleague, which is in conflict with FIBA, because the latter did not include the break for the World Cup qualifying matches in its calendar.
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For this reason, its captain Mateusz Ponitka from Zenita Sankt Petersburg will not play for Milicic’s team in Tel Aviv (his club will play against Panathinaikos on Thursday in Athens). The Israeli team will miss Tamir Blatt, basketball player of Alba Berlin, who will play in the Euroleague against Maccabi Tel Aviv on Thursday. The best club ever in Israel, however, fired the country’s representatives, enabling them to play against Poland and Estonia.
Poland competed with Israel in the European Championship 2022 qualifiers and lost twice – in Gliwice 71:75 and in Valencia 72:78. Both teams won promotion to next year’s Eurobasket. The historical balance of the matches with this opponent is unfavorable for Poland – three wins and eight losses.
However, with another rival in this window – Germany (Sunday in Lublin), the Poles have a positive balance – six wins and four losses. For the last time the white and red team played with basketball players from across the Oder in el. 2014 European Championship and won both games. In the Tokyo Olympics, Germany, one of the hosts of Euro 2022, took eighth place.
Estonia, which Poland (balance 4-3 for white-reds) will face only in the next FIBA window – in February 2022, will also participate in next year’s championships of the Old Continent in the Czech Republic, Germany, Italy and Georgia.
The division into groups in the elimination of the basketball World Cup in Europe:
A: Serbia, Latvia, Belgium, Slovakia
B: Greece, Turkey, Great Britain, Belarus
C: Slovenia, Croatia, Finland, Sweden
D: Germany, Poland, Israel, Estonia
E: France, Montenegro, Hungary, Portugal
F: Lithuania, Czech Republic, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria
G: Spain, Ukraine, Georgia, North Macedonia
H: Italy, Russia, Netherlands, Iceland