Every day throughout the group phase of EuroBasket 2022, we’ll select our game of the day that is a must-watch for all basketball fans. For Day 2, it’s the first selection of games in Milan that we go to for the clash of Ukraine and Great Britain.
Ukraine vs Great Britain, Group C, 2 September
Mediolanum Forum, Milan, Italy
14.15 CET, 13.15 BST, 08.15 EST, 05.15 PST
Why this game?
I mean, the first word in the fixture should say it all. This will be Ukraine’s national team taking the international stage for the world to see. This is about more than basketball. Sticking with the basketball aspect however it is also an utter must-win game for both sides as neither can afford a defeat here if they want to make a serious push at making the knockout stages.
Ukraine’s Svi Mykhailiuk will be in the spotlight after his up and down performances in the recent World Cup window and his recently being waived by the Toronto Raptors while Great Britain will be eager to prove that there is real growth to be seen in its programme.
What do the bookies say?
Ukraine are clear favourites here at 2/5 straight up while Great Britain are available at 9/4. The points spread has Ukraine down as -6.5 favourites.
What do we say?
This a lively looking British side and one that will certainly aim to run with the favourites but it’s too hard to look past an unimpressive World Cup window, even if it seemed like GB were treating it as a tune-up for this tournament. Ukraine will be playing with emotion, certainly, but they also bring some serious players to the table including Mykhailiuk, Alex Len, and Artem Pustovi.
With apologies to my near neighbours, I’m picking Ukraine and they’ll cover the spread.