|23 August 2010|
The lucky fans that watched Germany take apart Puerto Rico in two friendly games over the weekend have one thing on their mind with the FIBA World Championship getting underway in less than a week.
Any team that underestimates this young German team coached by the excellent tactician Dirk Bauermann is making a very big mistake.
Just as they impressed last year at the EuroBasket in Poland, Germany are developing into a very fine team.
In Halle, Bauermann's side had to come from behind but won over Puerto Rico, 73-63, and then in Bonn, the Germans rolled to a 97-74 triumph.
|Andrew Albicy and his team-mates were honoured by their Federation for bringing home the U20 title this summer|
Confidence in the German camp, it's safe to say, is growing.
Tim Ohlbrecht, one of the many impressive youngsters in the German set-up, spoke about the team's efforts in practice and friendly games after the second win.
"We are prepared for the World Championship and it's really, really fun," he said.
"The chemistry is right. I can hardly wait for the game against Argentina."
Argentina, the number one team in the FIBA World Rankings, are the Germans' first opponents on August 28.
They will also take on Serbia, Australia, Angola and Jordan.
Bauermann sounded giddy after his team's mauling of the Puerto Ricans but also sounded a note of caution.
"At the World Championship, we will underestimate no one and it will be interesting to see how we sell ourselves there," he said.
"I maintain that (an appearance) in the second round would be a great success."
French U20 Champions Recognized
Australia, Brazil, Ivory Coast and France, who are all gearing up for Turkey, were in action in Villeurbanne on Sunday.
But it was the presence of another team that may have caused the biggest stir.
At half-time of France's clash with the Ivory Coast, the French team that won the gold medal at the U20 European Championship Croatia was brought onto the court by the French Basketball Federation and received tremendous applause by onlookers.
Each was congratulated by French Basketball Federation president Yvan Mainini, vice president Jean-Pierre Siutat and CEO of the Federation, Jean-Pierre de Vincenzi.
No matter what happens this summer for France in Turkey, where they will face Spain, Lithuania, Lebanon, Canada and New Zealand in Group D, the future of French basketball is very, very bright.