Less than 48 hours after winning their ticket for Euro-2022, the French basketball players finish the qualifying phase against Great Britain on Monday in Podgorica (5 p.m.), with a greater sharing of playing time announced by coach Vincent Collar.
Against Montenegro on Saturday, the France team managed to win first thanks to its defense in the first period, when its effectiveness in attack was lacking, then thanks to the offensive awakening of Alexandre Chassang, Axel Bouteille, Isaïa Cordinier and especially Thomas Heurtel, back in blue after 18 months of absence.
After the qualification celebrated on Saturday night in the health bubble and the Hotel des Bleus in Podgorica, Collet praised the “selflessness” of his group and the “exemplary” behavior of his players this week.
"The players carry that with them. There is a real desire to prove things. It is all the more remarkable that for a lot of these players, they will not go to the Olympic Games or the European Championship. In any case, not all will go. But they do not ask questions, "said the coach.
Since February 2020, 18 players have taken part in the qualifying campaign during three international windows, including two health bubbles due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
- "Some vacancies" -
Monday against Great Britain, a very athletic team, Collet promised to share even more playing time, while the first place in the group is almost assured for the Blues.
After beating Great Britain 79 to 56 in November in Pau, the Blues will finish at the top of the pool if they do not lose more than 23 points.
"Even if the match is without a stake, for me there is not totally a match without a stake or a friendly match in the France team. Everything is important, and there are certain players that we will observe for the rest. , it is the Olympic Games this summer, "warned Collet.
Admittedly, the group will be reinforced at the Olympics (July 23-August 8) by NBA and Euroleague players who are not released by their clubs for international windows during the season, but "there are still some positions to be filled. Some players in this window may be, "added the manager.
The intensity of the match against Montenegro on Saturday evening, the most "intense" meeting of these qualifications according to Collet, has provided some lessons.
"We took information that was interesting."
© 2021 AFP