It is a decision as rare as it is ubiquitous. And who goes “against any sporting fairness” regrets Frédéric Donnadieu, general manager of Nanterre. On Wednesday evening, the 92 club will have to appear on the floor of Ljubljana, Slovenia during the 6th day of the Eurocup, deprived of its emblematic coach Pascal Donnadieu and seven professional players.
All were (re) tested positive for Covid-19 during the last exams on Sunday and will have to remain confined. Most of the cases would be mild. This internal epidemic has spared only five players in the workforce and had already caused the cancellation of the last two games of the Nanterriens: against the Turks of Bursaspor in the continental event last Tuesday and against Cholet in a Jeep Elite on Saturday.
Faced with this singular situation, the Ile-de-France leaders had sent an official request to postpone the match. In vain! The answer fell on Monday morning. Unequivocal. “The regulations stipulate that 8 players must be registered on the score sheet, we can do it by adding 3 hopeful players (Florian Fortas, Samuel Eyango and Victor Wembanyama) to the 5 professional players, explains Frédéric Donnadieu, general manager of the club. It’s dangerous for our players. They will play a high level match without having done any collective training for a week. Samuel (Eyango), who had tested positive before, has not trained for 3 weeks. This increases the risk of injury. There is a lot of despondency and resignation. “
A very special trip
Franck Le Goff, Pascal Donnadieu’s loyal right-hand man since Pro B, is therefore propelled to the head of the team. He will be assisted by Vincent Dziagwa. The club’s physical trainer will wear the assistant’s costume in place of Philippe Da Silva, also tested positive, without having any diploma. “We were told that it was not a problem,” said the general manager. This unique pair will be tasked with achieving a feat. Currently 5th, Isaïa Cordinier’s partners must indeed win if they want to hope to finish in one of the first four places (out of 6) in the group and get their ticket for the Top 16 of the event. “We go there because we have to but the priority will be not to hurt anyone,” says Franck Le Goff.
The trip will also be very special. The direct flight to Ljubljana originally booked having been canceled by the airline, the club will have to stop in Amsterdam before landing in Zagreb where a coach will take them to Ljubljana. A 10 hour expedition. Nanterre is not the only basketball club facing this kind of situation across Europe. Asvel, which did not have the required number of players, had to forfeit two Euroleague matches before benefiting from their postponement following the change in the competition rules. Nanterre did not take advantage of this settlement.
Boulogne-Levallois, 2nd in his group in the Eurocup, welcomes this Tuesday evening (8:45 p.m., Marcel-Cerdan sports center), the Spaniards from Malaga (1st) for the shock of the 6th day.
Article original de: www.leparisien.fr