Fenerbahçe, PAO set for Euro battle
ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
Fenerbahçe Ülker meets Panathinaikos, hoping to bounce back from last week’s defeat to Spain’s Real Madrid in the Turkish Airlines Euroleague. AA photoFenerbahçe Ülker takes on Panathinaikos in a key battle in the Euroleague tonight.
The Turkish team hosts PAO in a match that can define the race for the top spot in the Group A, where the two teams join Real Madrid in a three-way tie for first place, each with a 2-1 record.
Real Madrid takes on Cantu in another match tonight.
The game in Istanbul will also mark the return of former Fenerbahçe guard Roko Ukic as a Panathinaikos player. On the other hand, former Greens Romain Sato and Mike Batiste clash with their old team.
Batiste led Panathinaikos to three Euroleague titles in 2007, 2009 and 2011 and Sato joined him for the last of those.
“Panathinaikos its always a tough game. But for our group this season it’s normal to have many top games,” Fenerbahçe Ülker coach Simone Pianigiani was quoted as saying on the official Euroleague website. “We know that like one week ago with Real Madrid, we will be not totally healthy and ready with a full roster. But it’s another game at home so we have to win this game, put in some extra effort.
“I hope that my players will be ready to make something extra in this moment to overcome the first group because after we have time to be better and better than now.”
PAO coach Argiris Pedoulakis said “The quality of our opponent is undeniable, but they are also a team with a lot of new faces, lacking homogeneity.”
Another Turkish team, Anadolu Efes, visits Caja Laboral and Zalgiris Kaunas meets EA7 Milano in the Group C.
In the Group B, it is Maccabi Electra vs. Asseco Prokom and Unicaja Malaga vs. Alba Berlin, and in the Group D it is Barcelona Regal vs. Partizan.