FOR the first time in the tournament, Turkey played its twin towers Omer Asik and Semih Erden at the same time that resulted in a win to advance to the Fiba Olympic Qualifying Tournament semifinals.
Still, Turkey head coach Ergin Ataman is far from satisfied from the play of his wards going into the next stage against either France or New Zealand.
“It’s not easy to talk about basketball after this disaster game,” said Ataman, who is the coach of Galatasaray Odeabank in the Turkish domestic league. “First time in my life I saw this kind of basketball.”
Ataman was so disappointed with the play of his team that he apologized to the spectators who watched the game won by Turkey, 68-62, at the Mall of Asia Arena.
“Sorry for all the people who watched this game. But we are playing terrible. Their defensive capacity is not enough. We have too many turnovers, too many missed shots. It’s unacceptable this kind of offense performance,” said Ataman.
Ataman, however, saw positives as Asik and Erdin combined for 15 points and 10 rebounds, something that Turkey hopes to bring in their semifinal match on Saturday. The 6-foot-11 Asik is playing for the New Orleans Pelicans while Erdin once played for the Boston Celtics.
“We had two big guys together. That’s the first time they played together and we won. This is positive for us,” said Ataman.