The European Championship for Men and Women tipped off in Madridsara.smareglia
ECMWA, Madrid, Spain
The 2021 European Championship for Men and Women tipped off last weekend in Madrid, Spain.
The competition, which features 12 men and 6 women’s teams is the qualification tournament for the 2022 World Championships in Dubai next year. The top five placed men’s teams and four women’s teams will qualify.
There were big wins for Italy, Great Britain, and Germany on the first day of competition (Saturday 4 December) in the men’s tournament. Italy saw off newly promoted Austria, 82-28. Reigning World Champions Great Britain broke the 100-mark winning 103-46 against Israel. Germany eased its way into the competition with an 87-19 victory against newly promoted Lithuania. In the other match ups of day one, the Netherlands defeated Turkey, 63-55, and Poland got off to winning ways beating Switzerland, 69-54. The day ended with an exhilarating match between host Spain and France, 64-61.
On Sunday 5 December, Poland claimed its second win with a 40-point victory over Lithuania, 81-41. Turkey bounced back from its loss on the opening day to defeat Austria, 73-41. With a strong half, Spain closed the game against Switzerland at 76-48 and went 2-0. Great Britain, Germany, and Italy also maintained their unbeaten record with wins over Netherlands (69-45), France (69-55), and Israel (48-64), respectively.
Before the start of the third day’s play, Turkey was withdrawn from the men’s competition due COVID-19 positive tests in the delegation. The withdrawal meant that all games in the group stages are forfeited. Turkey receives zero ranking points and finishes in place 6, group B. As they are unable to play the crossover game, Turkey will finish 12th place in the Championship and will be relegated to European Championship Division B.
On day 3, Spain dominated against Lithuania, 86-48, and went 3-0 in group A. Germany won in the last seconds against Poland, 72-70. In group B, a big third quarter by the Netherlands secured a 63-41 victory against Israel. Great Britain remained unbeaten at the top of group B. A dominant fourth quarter led to a straightforward 99-51 win against Austria. The last game of the day saw France and Switzerland both looking for a first win of the tournament – final score of 66-48 for France.
The first three games on day 4 turned out to be one-sided affairs, with Germany beating Switzerland 86-43, France defeating Lithuania 92-34, and the Netherlands overcoming Austria 72-17. The last two were the more anticipated games. Poland fought against Spain, who closed the game at 83-58. In the top of group A, Great Britain managed the game against Italy to win 61-40.
The last day of men’s preliminary rounds starts with an exciting match until the last minute between France and Poland, 70-71. A win against Italy, 82-53, confirmed the second spot for the Netherlands in group B. Another electrifying game was Israel against Austria, 56-57. Germany turned the game against Spain, 54-73, and remains unbeaten in group A. The last match of the day saw Switzerland celebrating their first victory of the tournament by overcoming Lithuania, 63-29. Great Britain remains undefeated in group B.
Tomorrow (Thursday 9 December) the quarter finals will get underway. Spain will compete against Italy, Great Britain against France, Germany against Austrian, and the Netherlands against Poland.