- Title: SERBIA: BASKETBALL - Reactions to basketball brawl
- Date: 21st August 2010
- Summary: BELGRADE, SERBIA (AUGUST 20, 2010) (REUTERS) SERBIAN NATIONAL BASKETBALL TEAM COACH, DUSAN IVKOVIC, (CENTRE) WITH MANAGER OF NATIONAL TEAM, MIROSLAV BERIC (LEFT) AT THE NEWS CONFERENCE IVKOVIC T-SHIRT WITH SERBIA CREST IVKOVIC LISTENING TO A QUESTION
- Embargoed: 5th September 2010 13:00
- Location: Serbia
- Country: Serbia
- Topics: Sports
- Reuters ID: LVA9XIVXIFU03W0WSBANI2HZV2LM
- Story Text: Serbian national team coach Dusan Ivkovic, on his return from Athens, apologized on Friday (August 20) for the brawl during the friendly basketball match against Greece on Thursday (August 19) during the Acropolis Tournament.
"It is not good for us, for Greeks and Greek basketball, and I don't know, it is now an additional issue where we practically have to work a lot after such a situation on bringing psychological stability to players as no one slept last night," said Serbian national basketball team coach Dusan Ivkovic speaking at a news conference at Belgrade airport.
Ivkovic did not want to go into the details about who started the mass brawel.
"So this happened in such a way that practically players from both benches stormed there, players from both benches jumped in. I cannot claim now who was first, I can assume, it is not on me to evaluate that, it can be seen on the footage. We have footage of the game which was brought late this morning. And everything evolved into a brawl where some players were trying to separate others thus receiving punches, others were attacking. I cannot define now who did what. In that brawl, I may say, a model of a player, a model of a man, who would not be a captain of Serbian team, Nenad Krstic, apparently fared worse," Ivkovic added.
Serbian basketball player Krstic has been arrested for his role in a mass brawl that caused a game against Greece to be abandoned, Greek police said on Friday.
The 27-year-old, who plays for the NBA's Oklahoma City Thunder, was reported to have hit Yiannis Bourousis with a chair as the Greek player tried to break up a fight during their Acropolis Tournament game at the Olympic Indoor Hall on Thursday.
Krstic was arrested for an "infraction against the law of sports violence", according to police, and is expected to be sentenced later on Friday. Serbian sport minister Snezana Markovic, who happened to be in Athens, on her way to Belgrade from Singapore, has remained in Greece until the Krstic situation is cleared.
Ivkovic is currently the head coach of the Greek league team Olympiakos Piraeus,whose last game was also interrupted because of problems on the court.
"I feel bad, but I have to give information to our public where I have no inclination to protect neither our behaviour nor our discipline. That should not have happened to us. They are model players, ours and theirs. Whether this factor that someone wants to represent it as continuation of that interrupted game in the Greek championship, of the finals between Olympiakos and Panathenaikos so the two players confronted each other, I don't believe in that. Also for the benefit of basketball, if I can, I will together with my buddy Zeljko Obradovic, we will not face such situations, we will make at least a step forward to improve these relations which have really deteriorated now."
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
- Usage Terms/Restrictions: None