SPORTS

Zouros aims at Eurobasket final

New Greece coach Ilias Zouros said on March 28 that the current national team is the best side Greek basketball has ever seen and that it was aiming at a medal in the forthcoming Eurobasket in Lithuania.

Speaking during his official presentation by the Hellenic Basketball Federation, Zouros said he feels under no pressure: «The national team is the biggest challenge of my career because this is the greatest Greek team.”

He continued, «This is a responsible position and the team is at its highest quality level, but we are here to keep it high and take it even higher.»

Zouros?s first mission on the Greek bench will be the European Basketball Championship this September in Lithuania, whose courts are familiar to the new Greece coach as his full-time job is at Zalgiris Kaunas.

“We are not going to hide. We believe we have the capacity and we want to get onto the podium,» said federation president Giorgos Vassilakopoulos. Zouros went one better: «The aim is to get as high as possible, to go for a medal. When we say we just go for qualification to the Olympic Games, it is as if we do not believe in ourselves. We want to make it to the final.”

The new Greece head coach made an appeal to Dimitris Diamantidis and Thodoris Papaloukas, who have indicated they may not be part of the national team any longer.

“We first have to see the players we have available. Diamantidis and Papaloukas are great players and we want them. There will be discussions, but there is no hurry. I also watch the younger players. There was always a mix of younger and older players in the national team. It would be good for us to up our pace a little along with the brains we already have in the team,» explained Zouros.