Svetislav Pesic Hails Canada as World Cup's Top Team: 'We're in for a Challenge!'

Semifinal Clash Looms: Serbia Gears Up for Canada Challenge

by Zain ul Abedin
Svetislav Pesic Hails Canada as World Cup's Top Team: 'We're in for a Challenge!'
© Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images Sport

The FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 has been a spectacle of top-tier basketball, and as the tournament reaches its climactic stages, Serbia's national team head coach, Svetislav Pesic, has bestowed high praise upon their upcoming opponent, Canada.

In the buildup to the highly anticipated semifinal showdown, Pesic's words resonated across the basketball world, establishing Canada as the undisputed powerhouse of this year's competition. "In my opinion, we'll play against the best team in the World Cup," Pesic remarked in an interview with Mozzart Sport, echoing the sentiments of many basketball aficionados.

While Germany emerged as the only other team to reach the semifinals unscathed, Pesic emphasized that Canada had exhibited the exceptional caliber expected of a world-class squad. Canada's distinct style of play drew particular attention from Pesic, who lauded their adaptability to FIBA rules under the guidance of their European coach.

He noted that Canada's approach diverged markedly from that of Team USA, with a strong emphasis on defense and tactics tailored to suit FIBA regulations. "They have adapted a little more to FIBA rules. Better than the Americans," Pesic affirmed.

Canada's Dominant Small-Ball Strategy

Further dissecting Canada's game, Pesic underlined their penchant for small-ball basketball, a strategy characterized by a limited presence of towering players on the court. "Canada is a fantastic team that plays small-ball basketball," he remarked.

"They just start with two tall players, but after that, it's all small-ball basketball, with four players outside [the paint] and one inside." This small-ball approach, emblematic of NBA-style play, has proven to be Canada's forte.

Pesic stressed the importance of meticulous planning and effective role allocation for his Serbian squad, as they prepare to counter Canada's style. The Serbian coach also acknowledged the critical need to thwart Canada's transition offense, a facet of their game where they excel.

The Canadian team boasts a roster filled with exceptional talent, with players who have showcased their prowess in the NBA. Pesic acknowledged this, stating, "They are all excellent players with excellent numbers in their NBA clubs.

All of them are good attackers and defenders." It's evident that Canada's lineup is a force to be reckoned with on both ends of the court. As the basketball world eagerly awaits the Serbia-Canada clash, the spotlight now firmly shines on Canada, whose impressive journey through the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 has earned them the distinction of being the team to beat.

With Coach Pesic's insights underscoring their prominence, basketball enthusiasts around the globe are poised for an unforgettable semifinal encounter.