SPORTS

Faros Keratsiniou, of the A2 division, beats PAOK to reach cup final

faros-keratsiniou-of-the-a2-division-beats-paok-to-reach-cup-final

Faros Keratsiniou became on Monday only the third team ever from the second tier of Greek basketball to reach the final of the Greek Cup, after surprisingly seeing off Thessaloniki giant PAOK 69-65 at home. It will face Panathinaikos, that defeated Aris on Sunday.

The team from the A2 division had already claimed four A1 scalps on its way to the knock-out semifinal with PAOK, and made it five in great style as it kept Eurocup challenger PAOK at bay for most of the match at the Piraeus suburb of Keratsini.

Made up of former A1 players, the Faros squad has been unbeaten this year in league and cup and had reached the semis by way of beating Kifissia at home.

The only other A2 teams to have made the final of the Cup have been Panellinios in 1987 and Rethymno in 2007. They both lost.

Faros will also be the clear underdog against Panathinaikos, that reached the final for a 12th consecutive year. The Greens, winners of the cup a record 16 times, faced the stiff challenge of Aris at home in the first half (38-37), but in the second they ran away with the game to triumph 90-69.

Panathinaikos had defeated Olympiakos away in the quarterfinals.

The final will take place in mid-February and its location will be decided in the coming days. Xanthi, Kozani and Iraklio are said to bid for hosting it.