After the fourth round, only one team will be without defeats in the Erste Super league - Mornar or Buducnost Voli. They played the fourth mutual duel this season in "Topolica" (free entry) on Wednesday night.
Buducnost won all three previous games, two in the league section of the ABA league (in Bar 99:95, in Podgorica 102: 71), and also celebrated in the semi-finals of the Montenegrin Cup in Podgorica with 92:82. Except twice in the Super league, Mornar and Buducnost could meet five times in the eventual (and expected) final series of the play-off.
"Needless to say, Buducnost is an absolute favorite and is by far the best Montenegrin team. Our duels have been interesting for several years, and I would like them to be as uncertain as last year, but this is almost impossible to expect because Buducnost is at a much higher level than we are. We are not even close to the last year’s level. Of course, we will do our best to provide good resistance and give basketball lovers in Montenegro a great show so that we can all enjoy basketball together. It is important to bring back the story about basketball because I will not comment on anything else. I hope that the people who come to watch the match, as well as the ones in front of the TV screens, will enjoy the basketball skills of both teams, but I repeat, Buducnost is the absolute favorite in the upcoming match," said the coach of the team from Bar, Mihailo Pavicevic.
Mornar, who in the last season with a 3:1 in the final series, took the title from Buducnost, in first three rounds entered victories against Jedinstvo (102: 80), Ulcinj (85:78) and last against Sutjeska (106: 87).
"Considering the way we played the first two games, we defeated Sutjeska a lot easier than I had hoped. I was expecting a much tougher match, and I was pleasantly surprised by my players and they played the best game so far in the Super League and it gives me hope that we can raise the level of the game, to make the Montenegrin Championship as interesting as possible. I particularly look forward to a good game and a positive approach by the players who enter the game from the bench as well as young players," Pavicevic added.
MIJOVIĆ WORRIED ABOUT INJURIES
Buducnost has entered three victories, all convincing ones, against Lovcen (104: 78), Jedinstvo (105: 77) and Ulcinj (110: 63).
"It seems to me that the team has reacted a little better than I expected, especially when it comes to motivation and concentration, all of which resulted in all three games entering a relatively light victory. I'm happy on that side," says Buducnost coach Petar Mijovic for "Vijesti".
As he says, the derby will show where Buducnost and Mornar stand currently.
"To win in Bar, it is necessary to be the best since the beginning of the Super League, to have the maximum concentration, the focus in all 40 minutes. It is necessary that some of the things that represented the problem, especially in the defense, are at a significantly higher level because the quality of Mornar’s players is such that they will punish all that is missing. We are preparing very seriously, for a serious opponent, and I hope that we can continue with the victories in Bar," adds Mijovic, who highly appreciates the team of Mornar.
"For the last few years, Buducnost and Mornar play the big derbies of Montenegrin basketball. Mornar is the only team, who, since independence, managed to take the title next to Buducnost, which was a surprise last season. Mornar is in very good shape this season, after a good season, and surely they will again be the biggest opponent for the title."
ULCINJ AND JEDINSTVO SEEK THEIR FIRST VICTORIES
In the shadow of the derby in Bar, two more games are played. After three rounds, only Jedinstvo and Ulcinj are with no victories. The team from Ulcinj will be the first to try to register a win at home against Lovcen, who they lost to twice in the Erste League (73:54 at home, 83:75 in Cetinje).
"After a slightly slower start, we have achieved an important victory on our field, and now we will play against a very good team from Ulcinj who played in front of their supporters with one ball against Sutjeska and Mornar. We have trouble with injuries on the outside positions, but I am certain that whoever gets out on the field will give their maximum. We have to be focused during all 40 minutes to break the resistance of the team from Ulcinj, we know it will not be easy, but we want to achieve another victory that would mean a lot to us in the race for the first four places," Masan Vrbica said.
A much more difficult job is awaiting Jedinstvo, who play away in Sutjeska. The team from Bijelo Polje won at home against Sutjeska (78:70) in the league section of the Erste League, but lost in Niksic (93:68).
Text by Sasa Joncic, on May 1st, 2019, read more at Vijesti