Russia Made To Work By Great Britain

16 August 2012

U20 WOMEN

Alexandra Stolyar (Russia)
Alexandra Stolyar was the only Russian player to score in double figures, finishing the game with 13 points

Russia tipped off their U20 European Championship Women campaign with a hard fought 55-49 success in Group D against a resilient Great Britain.

The depleted British team entered the tournament without a number of key players but produced an impressively dogged display against an opponent widely tipped to as contenders to finish on the podium.

Falling behind 20-11, Great Britain initially looked like potential blowout candidates but they played with composure against a Russia team who is likely to improve as the competition unfolds.

One of the most engaging aspects of a rugged contest was the battle in the paint between Russian centre Ksenia Tikhonenko and her 1995 born counterpart Cheridene Green.

The Great Britain player did a fine job on debut at this level and it was her free-throws which made it a one-shot game at 36-34.

But, just when the Brits were dreaming of an unlikely success, Alexandra Stolyar made a deep three-pointer to get Russia rolling again.

Then, midway through the final quarter, Stolyar struck again from outside to finally kill-off any realistic chance Great Britain had of causing an upset - even if they did briefly cut the gap to just five points inside the last minute.


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