Croatia has kept their hopes alive to qualify for the 2019 Basketball World Cup with a 5-point win over Hungary in Osijek last night.
Croatia, minus their NBA stars, beat Hungary 74:69 (22:15, 22:23, 18:12, 12:19) in their 9th round match in Group J. The victory means Croatia jumps ahead of Hungary in the group and now they sit 4th with 13 points. The top 3 teams from the group advance.
Lithuania is in top spot with 17 points, followed by Italy with 16 points and Poland in 14 points in third place. Lithuania has already secured their World Cup birth.
On Sunday, Croatia will meet Lithuania in Vilnius where a win would put them on track to finish third ahead of the final group match.
Last night Miro Bilan was Croatia’s standout player with 22 points and 14 rebounds. Domagoj Bošnjak was impressive with 17 points, including four three-pointers. Martin Junaković provided 6 assists.
For Hungary, Zoltan Perl was their top scorer with 20 points, followed by David Vojvoda with 14 points.
World Cup Qualifiers: Group J
1. Lithuania – 17 points
2. Italy – 16
3. Poland – 14
4. Croatia – 13
5. Hungary – 13