Serbia have played brilliantly through the knock-out rounds to land shot at Americans…
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Serbia booked their place in the FIBA World Cup 2014 final after a thrilling 90-85 win over France on Friday night in Madrid and will now take on Team USA.
After an underwhelming qualifying campaign followed by a 2-3 run through the group phase, little was expected from Serbia ahead of their Round of 16 clash with Greece.
However, they haven’t looked back since after routing the previously unbeaten Greeks 90-72 before upsetting the odds again in the quarter-finals against Brazil with a 84-56 victory.
Continuing the trend, few expected them to defeat France after they successfully ended hosts Spain’s run, but yet again Aleksandar Djordjevic’s men pulled off another upset in what was an enthralling battle.
“We’re not going to be scared for sure,” said Nenad Krstic, ESPN reports.
“Now our confidence is high and OK, we have a chance, maybe some players never get this chance to play against U.S., great U.S. team in the final of the World Cup. It’s an unbelievable chance to do something great in our lives.”
Point guard Milos Teodosic conceded that it was “every kid’s dream to play in a world championship final”, and it makes the experience that bit sweeter that they will take on the powerhouse that is Team USA.
Again, few will fancy Serbia to come through their next test, but their belief, team spirit and individual quality has carried them this far and they will hope to make it as competitive as possible heading into the final quarter.
Nevertheless, they also showed their pose and determination against the French after a furious comeback which saw Portland Trail Blazers star Nicolas Batum end the game with 35 points.
Batum, Boris Diaw and Evan Fournier started hitting from three-point range to set up a nervy ending after Serbia had dominated for the most part, but ultimately, they had done enough with their performance through the first three quarters to hold off the challenge of their rivals and book their place in Sunday’s finale.
Meanwhile, France will now face Lithuania in the bronze medal match on Saturday.
Serbia 90-85 France