|18 June 2012|
EUROBASKET WOMEN QUALIFIERS
|Montenegro might have to break up the dynamic duo of Jelena Dubljevic and Iva Perovanovic for a little while, but things could have been much worse|
Montenegro can breathe a huge sigh of relief after it was revealed an injury to the influential Iva Perovanovic was not as serious as first feared.
Perovanovic found herself in a Fribourg hospital on Saturday night after sustaining a worrying ankle injury in the 82-67 success against Switzerland which maintained the perfect start of Montenegro, who had previously swept aside Serbia during their opening game.
At first, the coaching staff and medical team had feared the center had suffered a fractured ankle, but after undertaking a more detailed examination and scan, it was revealed that thankfully, there was no fracture.
The news she won't have to spend any time on the sidelines is a welcome boost for Montenegro who of course, had to watch Perovanovic be carried out of the arena at the EuroBasket Women in Lodz last summer with their chances of a place at this year's Olympic Qualifying Tournament more or less having accompanied her departure.
Unsurprisingly, despite this welcome boost, she remains a major doubt for the pivotal clash with Poland on Wednesday night in Cetinje as Montenegro looks to rack up a third win on the bounce.
Meanwhile, Poland will also be without a key player on Wednesday after point guard Paulina Pawlak was ruled out with a muscle injury sustained in the win against Estonia over the weekend.
Perovanovic was excellent against the Swiss with 24 points and seven rebounds and as ever, worked so beautifully in tandem with frontcourt partner Jelena Dubljevic who was also outstanding and poured in a game-high 29 points.
The prospect of the duo being broken up for forthcoming games is disappointing although for now Dubljevic is just focused on reflecting on a hard-fought win against a tricky Swiss opponent.
"We knew that the game against Switzerland would be easier than it was against Serbia but every opponent must be taken very seriously," Dubljevic said.
"Initially, Switzerland was an equal opponent and it took us a while to gain the double-digit lead, and when we finally got it, we did not relinquish it.
She added: "This was an important victory, because this competition is very hard when you have to play every three days.
"For now, we have a steady pace and are heading for a place at EuroBasket Women and we hope to continue in the same rhythm during the upcoming matches."