Dusan Ivkovic: “We deserved to win the cup...”

Defeating Fenerbahçe 70-60 at the finals of Royal Halı Turkish Cup and winning it, Anadolu Efes coach Dusan Ivkovic stated his thoughts at the post-game press conference:

“It was a very challenging tournament, attended by the best eight teams in Turkey. My team deserved the victory. We won three matches in a very short duration, and achieved great success. This cup will be a source of motivation for us to work more and more. We played three tough matches in four days. If we had lost in the quarter finals or the semi finals, we would have gone back to training. But when you are in the finals, it’s very important to win it. We were good against Galatasaray, better against Darüşşafaka, but probably best today. Controlling the game meant a lot to us. After a 7-0 trailing start to the match against a very strong and experienced team and a very experienced coach, we had the control throughout the game. This is very significant for a young team like us. This was our sixth match in 13 days. We have a challenging schedule – maybe even more intense than the NBA calendar. As far as I have observed in my career as a coach, teams can mentally and physically get exhausted after cup matches in February and March. We will keep working hard. This victory is an indicator that we are reaping the fruits of our hard work.

I would like to congratulate all my players. Also, our club’s president Mr. Tuncay Özilhan called to congratulate me. I would like to thank him a lot and congratulate him back. I believe he is also very happy that we have won the cup.

We will proceed on our way and work hard. On Friday, we will play a tough match against Laboral Kutxa in the Euroleague. The season is long, and we will continue working in a diligent and disciplined manner...”

Anadolu Efes’s captain Doğuş Balbay also stated his thoughts at the press conference: “I previously stated that we had been making our plans to stay until Sunday while preparing for the cup. We have reached the final after challenging matches against Galatasaray and Darüşşafaka. In the final, we have played against Fenerbahçe, among the top contenders of the league. Today, we kept on fighting all 40 minutes of the game. We tried to keep the level of our defense as high as possible. The score was balanced throughout the game, but we managed to win. We worked hard and deserved this cup. I would like to thank the fans in Gaziantep for their support...”

  • Doğuş Balbay
  • Dusan Ivkovic
  • Turkish Cup