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Basketball, 2023 World Cup Qualifiers: Iceland in X-rays and why it will be a tough away match for Italy


A fundamental week for the Italian national basketball team in qualifying for the 2023 World Cup . Italy will take the field tomorrow in Iceland and will repeat again on Sunday against the Icelanders themselves. A double appointment that can absolutely be decisive for Meo Sacchetti’s team, who lost in the first two days in Russia and then won at home against the Netherlands.

Iceland also have the exact same record as Italy, but so far they have always played far from their audience. A narrow victory in Holland (79-77) and then a very bad defeat against Russia for 89-65. Even for the Icelanders, therefore, these two matches with Italy are fundamental, given that the first three of each group will qualify in the next round, bringing with them the points of the first phase.

Basketball, 2023 World Cup Qualifiers: Italy, the trip to Iceland postponed to tomorrow. The 13 blues have been chosen for Hafnarfjordur

It is an Italy that will have to pay close attention to Iceland, which in the past has often achieved prestigious victories in qualifying, resulting in a real loose cannon. The usual concomitance with the Euroleague has deprived Sacchetti of many of his best elements, a factor that always greatly disadvantages the most highly rated national teams at international level. The approach for the Azzurri will be important in an atmosphere that is certainly made very warm by the cheering of the hosts, also because Iceland plays a lot in this match.

A formation that Icelandic with a very solid quintet, but with a bench with few weapons in tow. The point of reference is undoubtedly Martin Hermannsson, absolute driver with 27 points in the victory against the Netherlands. The Valencia guard is the man to watch for the Azzurri defense, but also pay attention to the other little Elvar Fridriksson, who plays in Belgium with Antwerp, and then to the former Fortitudo (he terminated the contract some week) Jon Axel Gudmundsson.

Italy’s road to the World Cup is still long, but the crossing in Iceland must absolutely be overcome without incidents, which could then be very expensive in the future.

Credit FIB