The Israel National Basketball Team defeated Poland 75-71 in their in their first Eurobasket 2021 qualifier. The Blue & White were able to withstand the Polish side who were led by star guard AJ Slaughter of Real Betis. The naturalized American sliced up Oded Katash’s squad by scoring 29 points, 20 of which came in the first half as the Israeli defense came to the rescue, stifling Mike Taylor’s team to take the victory.
Captain Gal Mekel showed exactly what he can do when healthy as the 31-year old played brilliantly, recording a double double with 11 points and 10 assists to go along with 3 steals. Veteran forward Guy Pnini was also instrumental in the victory with 9 points while big man Idan Zalmanson added 12 points and Rafi Menco chipped in with 10 points in the win.
Israel will now prepare to face Romania on Monday night at the Drive In Arena in Tel Aviv with FIBA President Hamane Niang in attendance. Tip off is slated for 19:00 Israel time.