RSV Lahn-Dill: Summit against the Master

(On the ground straight from the Bundesliga wheelchair basketball league, German champions RSV Lahn-Dill will face defending champion RSB Thuringia Bulls again on Saturday night.

The venue for the first time is the Rittal Arena Wetzlar. The high ball of the summit meeting will be at 7.30pm, and the free live broadcast begins on RSV’s live broadcast portal at www.rsvlahndill.de/livestream at 7 pm.

Since the two major opponents’ first meeting in December 2010, it has become the 43rd competitive match between midfield Hessen and Thuringia. RSV Lahn-Dill rolled off the ground as the winner exactly 20 times, and the Bulls from Elxleben 22 times. This was also the case in the first leg in December, when RSB coach Michael Engel’s team was ahead in their courtroom with 79:72. This was East Germany’s 17th successive in a row against Witzler’s team.

But coronavirus cases have also resulted in the cancellation of several training units, and newcomer Steve Serio had recently joined the RSV team. Those turbulent times logistically are now a thing of the past for head coach Janet Zeltinger and her assistant coach Gunter Meyer, as the two teams face each other on Saturday.

The game on the field from the main round not only decides who will start the qualifiers with the best starting position, but also makes the whole wheelchair basketball scene. A total of 22 players from nine countries converge at the Rital Arena, many of them highly decorated in the Paralympics, World Championships or European Championships. With only a few exceptions, they all wore their home shirt in the junior or senior national teams: for Australia, Great Britain, Iran, Latvia, the Netherlands, Austria, Poland, USA and of course to Germany. There are world champions and winners in the Paralympic Games, European champions Simon Brown, Jetski Visser or Brian Bell, as well as Alexander Halosky, Thomas Bohm or Helen Freeman as major stars in their own countries. Routine works like Dominik Mosler or Andre Bienek as well as Marie Kier or Catharina Weiß, of which the future still belongs.

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For a central Hessian host, it is important to limit the air supremacy of the two mighty Thuringian attack centers under the panels. Vahid Gholomazad and Halouski are the final point providers for the guests, together holding an average of nearly 49 points per game and thus are considered key players for the Bulls Team. Coach Engel’s team faces the challenge of slowing down fast RSV players like Böhme, Serio, Bell or Brown. The daily form of both sides, each player separately, will play a decisive role in the outcome of the match.

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