Spain end long wait for European title

21st September 2009, Comments 0 comments

Spain won their first European title when they beat Serbia 85 -63 on Sunday.

Katowice – World champions Spain won their first European title on Sunday, beating Serbia 85-63 in the final, 74 years after the country first tried, and failed, to capture a continental crown.

Since 1935, Spain had played and lost six finals, but on Sunday seven proved a lucky number.

Despite a sluggish start to the tournament, Spain, the Olympic silver medallists, got stronger as the event progressed, winning their last three games convincingly, seeing off France 86-66 in the last eight and Greece 82-64 in the semi-finals.

Spain's NBA star, Pau Gasol, was voted the tournament's most valuable player and the LA Laker was in superb form in the final, scoring 18 points in a 22-minute spell and mopping up 11 rebounds.

"We worked really hard to win this title," said Gasol. "I am proud of my team. We played incredibly in the last five and a half matches.

"At the beginning of the competition, we didn't play like a team. But we got together and we said it's now or never. Then we just clicked.

"The turning point was our match against Lithuania in the second round. We were behind by nine points but we won by 20. From that point onwards, we started to play brilliant basketball."

AFP / Expatica

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