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Eurobasket 2022 – National basketball: The presence of Greece in the institution

SPORT24 presents the history of Greece in Eurobasket. From the bronze medal in Cairo in 1949, to the two golds, one silver and one bronze that followed.

The Men’s National Team is preparing to enter the battle of Eurobasket 2022. But first the SPORT24 decided to go back in time and present the events of Greece to the institution, with special reference to its best moments.

So here is the story of the Men’s National Team in Eurobasket:

It started in Cairo

In the year 2022 it seems paradoxical. But once upon a time, non-European countries also participated in the Eurobasket. Basically, they were already organizing them, as happened in the distant 1949 when the Eurobasket was hosted in Cairo. There, the host Egypt emerged as champion in an event in which only 7 teams took part in total. Among them was Greece, whose leader was the great Phaedon Matthaiou, an iconic figure of Greek basketball.


01 September 2022 08:46


In its first appearance at Eurobasket, the National team didn’t look fishy. Instead, he made it all the way to a 3rd place finish and the bronze medal, finishing the event with a 4-2 record. Behind the champion Egypt (6-0), was still France with a record of 5-1. Greece’s only losses came to the two teams that finished above them in the competition.

Two years later, Greece finished 8th in the 1951 Eurobasket in France. It took 10 years for him to take part in the competition again, when he finished 17th in Eurobasket 1961 in Belgrade. In 1963 he did not take part in the Eurobasket in Poland. Until 1985 he never managed to finish higher than 8th place. But somewhere there, something would change.

The “golden” 1987 and the collected hits

In June 1987, everything in Greece smelled of… basketball. As if ready for a long time, the Men’s National Team was about to pull off the biggest surprise in the history of the institution.

Coached by Costas Politis and supported by the quartet of Galis, Giannakis, Fasoula and Christodoulou, who were flanked by 8 players who knew their role (Kampouris, Andritsos, Linardos, Stavropoulos, Ioannou, Filippou, Romanidis, Karatzas), Greece broke them apart all and won the gold medal, defeating the mighty USSR in the final 103-101 in overtime thanks to two shots by Argyris Kampouris. In the semi-final, he eliminated the also powerful Yugoslavia of Drazen Petrovic.

This success of Greece paved the way for the most successful 10 years in the history of the team in the institution of Eurobasket. The gold medal in Athens was followed by the silver medal at Eurobasket 1989 in Zagreb and three more (consecutive) appearances in the top four (1993, 1995, 1997). But somewhere there came the fall.

The accumulated failures, the boom of 2005 and the subsidence

In 1999, injury-hit Greece hit rock bottom. Literally, after finishing 16th out of 16 teams in France’s Eurobasket. Two years later, in 2001, came 9th place in Turkey and then 5th place at Eurobasket 2003 in Sweden. Greece then closed 14 years away from the podium. But the good news was coming.

At Eurobasket 2005, under the instructions of Panagiotis Giannakis, a new, renewed National Team found its way. Playing her own basketball, she reached the top of Europe, beating Dirk Nowitzki’s Germany 78-62 in the final. Earlier, in one of the most important games in its history, it had defeated France 67-66 in the semi-final thanks to a three-pointer by Dimitris Diamantidis.

Having forged a new path, Greece took 4th place at Eurobasket 2007 in Spain. In 2009, at Eurobasket in Poland, Jonas Kazlauskas took over from Panagiotis Giannakis, built a new team and led it to 3rd place. This was Greece’s last success in the institution.

From Eurobasket 2011 onwards, the National Team is looking for its way, without having managed to break into the top four so far. Something he hopes will change this year.

Greece’s participation in Eurobasket

1935 (Geneva) Did not participate
1937 (Riga) Did not participate
1939 (Kaunas) He did not participate
1946 (Geneva) Did not participate
1947 (Prague) Did not participate
1949 (Cairo) 3rd place
1951 (Paris) 8th place
1953 (Moscow) Did not participate
1955 (Budapest) Did not participate
1957 (Sofia) Did not participate
1959 (Istanbul) Did not participate
1961 (Belgrade) 17th place
1963 (Wrocław) Did not participate
1965 (Moscow) 8th place
1967 (Tamere) 12th place
1969 (Napoli) 10th place
1971 (Essen) Did not participate
1973 (Barcelona) 11th place
1975 (Belgrade) 12th place
1977 (Liège) Did not participate
1979 (Turin) 9th place
1981 (Prague) 9th place
1983 (Nades) 11th place
1985 (Stuttgart) Did not participate
1987 (Athens) 1st place
1989 (Zagreb) 2nd place
1991 (Rome) 5th place
1993 (Munich) 4th place
1995 (Athens) 4th place
1997 (Barcelona) 4th place
1999 (Paris) 16th place
2001 (Istanbul) 9th place
2003 (Stockholm) 5th place
2005 (Belgrade) 1st place
2007 (Madrid) 4th place
2009 (Katowice) 3rd place
2011 (Kaunas) 6th place
2013 (Ljubljana) 11th place
2015 (Lille) 5th place
2017 (Istanbul) 8th place

EuroBasket 2022: The ultimate guide with stadiums, rosters, stars and TV schedule

01 September 2022 08:10

The article is in Greek

Tags: Eurobasket National basketball presence Greece #institution

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