Semifinal 1 preview: One team will make it to its first final
It′s time for SIGAL UNIQA Balkan League Final Four. At 17:00 hrs local time in Albania, KK Blokotehna-NB and BC Academic Bultex 99 will square off in the first semifinal of the competition. It will be a historic moment for one of the teams as whoever wins tonight will reach its first ever final in BIBL. The match will be broadcast LIVE on Albanian National TV (RTSH channel) and SportMedia.tv.
Blokotehna finished second in the Regular season but comes to the F4 with a lot of problems. The team′s best player Danilo Mijatovic, the captain Goran Glavchev and the forward Vojche Lefkovski are all injured and that puts them in a really tough situation. However it′s a great moment for the other to step up and prove their worth to the squad. The experience of Marjan Mladenovikj, Brandon Penn and Bozo Djumic will have to come out in front tonight while Petar Nikolikj and Stevan Gligorijevikj are the others who are expected to play a lot. For sure the problem will come with the shorter rotation and the ones coming off the bench who don′t have so much experience in such games. However, as coach Ilievski expects, his team will be really motivated and will give even more than its maximum to try and make up for the absence of the others.
Academic comes in to the game without any problems which is a good news. Franklin and Bachev will be the ones carrying the load on offense while former winner Aleksandar Gruev and his experience could prove equally important. Under the basket is where the Plovdiv team should try to make its advantage as Olisemeka, Vitkovic and Vujovic will have to capitalize on Mijatovic′s absence and step up for their team. Adding to all those also Venelin Hristov, we can see that Academic′s rotation is deeper and that could prove to be a difference near the end of the game.
During the season the teams exchanged one win on their home courts but that won′t count for nothing come this game especially given the absences in Blokotehna′s roster and those of Academic when the first match in Gevgelija was played.