Slovenia coach Aleksander Sekulic acknowledged the recognition of his group–because of the presence of NBA celebrity Luka Doncic–which that they had felt upon arriving in Manila for the ultimate section of the Fiba World Cup.
Doncic and the Slovenians landed at Ninoy Aquino Worldwide Airport forward of Wednesday’s quarterfinal match with Canada amid a whole lot of fanfare as Filipino followers are beginning to discover methods to both catch a glimpse of the Dallas Mavericks cager or get a uncommon probability for a photograph or an autograph.
Sekulic, whose group bought a visit to Manila by the use of being the highest two finishers of the second spherical, stated that it was fairly apparent that having Doncic has made Slovenia one of many high sights going into the enterprise finish of the competitors.
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“Basketball may be very well-liked [here, and] having Luka on the group makes us extra well-liked. It’s apparent,” stated Sekulic after Slovenia wrapped up observe at Mall of Asia Area. “It’s an excellent feeling enjoying right here and enjoying for [a spot in the] semifinals.”
However Slovenia is predicted to share the eye with a Canadian aspect boasting of Shea Gilgeous-Alexander, RJ Barrett and anti-hero Dillon Brooks as the 2 squads struggle for a berth within the semis towards both Lithuania or Serbia.
“It’s the quarterfinals,” stated Sekulic. “If it’s Canada or another group, all people got here right here to win. It’s the knockout stage and if we win, we go for a medal.
“Whatever the opponent, they’re going to present something they should win this recreation,” he added.
Doncic spent observe both engaged on his shot or sharing mild moments together with his teammates as Slovenia appears to have shaken off Sunday’s loss to Germany in Okinawa, Japan.
Slovenia had a powerful begin and led by double digits earlier than Germany mounted a comeback to affix Lithuania as the one groups to enter the quarters unbeaten.