Great Britain celebrate warm-up win over Hungary ahead of 2017 Eurobasket finals

Great Britain celebrate warm-up win over Hungary ahead of 2017 Eurobasket finals
By Sportsbeat

25/08/2017 at 12:44

Gabe Olaseni insists confidence is growing in his side after Great Britain ended a five-match losing streak to earn a 82-64 victory over Hungary in their final warm-up tournament ahead of Eurobasket 2017 in Warsaw.

Olaseni inspired Britain to the win alongside Dan Clark as the duo led the scoring with 14 points each, while Andrew Lawrence and captain Kieron Achara added 13 points apiece.

It was sweet revenge for Great Britain, who faced Hungary in their qualifying group for the tournament last year where they came out on the wrong end of the scoreline on both occasions.

But after such a convincing win, Olaseni believes Great Britain have finally put their bad run of recent form – which included a four-point defeat to EuroBasket contenders Greece for the third time this summer – firmly behind them.

"It's great to get a win under our belts," said Olaseni.

"We lost out twice to the Hungarians in the qualifiers last year and that was in our memory.

"We just tried to execute the game plan as best as we could and we were lucky enough to get a big win. It's especially good in the week going into EuroBasket, it's all positives.

"Losses like the one against Greece always affect a team like us, we're a team of competitors.

"A tough loss like that being so recent is always in the back of your mind and we could have won that.

"But this time, we executed the game plan and we'll take the win."

Britain were on the front foot from the off which saw newcomer Luke Nelson involved in Britain’s opening 11 points, netting the first four himself and assisting on the next seven in a dominant quarter which saw Great Britain lead 20-15.

Despite a fine spell of shooting from Hungary in the second quarter, Great Britain dug deep and closed the half with a 15-4 margin to lead 41-35 at the interval.

And although Hungarian talisman Adam Hanga led a brief resurgence to narrow Britain’s lead to two points in the third, Joe Prunty’s team rallied and showcased their defensive solidity to slowly wear down their opponents.

An Achara 3-pointer helped stretch Britain’s lead to double figures by the end of the third, where they came out on top at 61-48.

And they went on to dominate the final quarter to overcome their opponents in a comfortable win, with Ben Mockford scoring impressively from beyond the arc as Britain saw the game out with ease.

Speaking after his side’s victory, head coach Prunty praised the cohesiveness within his squad and highlighted the massive strides the team have taken in recent years.

"The thing I like about this group is the chemistry," he said.

"We spoke five years ago about creating a family culture so it was interesting to see the older guys retain the system in place and the younger guys pick it up and learn the terminology.

"That was interesting to watch because five years ago, everybody was trying to learn the system.

"I think we've got a very versatile team. You've got several players who've been together for a while and a young core working their way up. They fit in with the style of play and the culture."

Sportsbeat 2017