The leader of the Dominican Basketball Team valued the participation of the Caribbean team in the FIBA pre-Olympic qualification as a tough learning experience
The Olympic dream of the Dominican Basketball Team ended abruptly after his confrontation with Italy in the semifinal stage, when they were crushed by a score of 79 against 59 in what was the third match of the Caribbean team in the Olympic qualifier FIBA to Tokyo 2020.
To be completely honest, no one doing an objective analysis of the situation expected that Dominican Republic could play in the semifinals, much less put a team like the Serbia and get a win out of Philippines, which had classified the tournament undefeated. In the same way, the Dominican team was not a favorite against an Italy that was superior from the initial jump.
“It was a difficult game, we played against one of the best teams in this tournament. They are difficult, they play hard, they are tough, we wanted to play our style, but they imposed a strong defense that prevented us from scoring from the perimeter, they did a great job on defense. It is the type of confrontation that teaches you what it means to play against high-level teams in this type of tournament ”, were the opening words of the leader of the Dominican Basketball Team, Melvyn Lopez, to open the press conference.
“One of the things that I take away from this tournament is that the players from the Dominican Republic, those who are here, play hard and can play against anyone. We have the talent, we need to keep working and keep improving to learn how to play against these types of teams (Italy), but my team of coaches and I are very proud of what our players showed, they can go head-to-head against anyone ” continued the leader.
Lopez defended his squad and pointed out that the Dominican Republic you should be proud of the work done during the tournament. He also understands that there is work ahead to continue growing the project and that now the view is set on trying to repeat the experience, but next time, try to bring the country to the Olympic Games of 2024.
“The team that came to this tournament, every man who represented the Dominican flag showed that he can play. I do not want to talk about players who could not come, only those who were here, we have things to improve, but each player who was here showed a high level and commitment. Who knows if others can help us tomorrow, but today we teach that we can play against anyone “, concluded the coach Lopez.