Follow FIBA on Facebook
Italy's biggest names on hand as Trophy Tour touches down in Milan
MILAN (FIBA EuroBasket 2017 Trophy Tour) – Italy's biggest stars, of both the men's and women's games, were present when the FIBA EuroBasket Trophy Tour rolled into Italy's fashion capital, Milan.
The trophy was present at the team's official Media Day on Friday, which took place in the Sky Sports Studios. A pool of invited journalists and media representatives were selected to be at the event. Along with the biggest names of the men's team, including Luigi Datome and Danilo Gallinari, was young female sensation Cecilia Zandalasini, who earlier this summer was voted onto the All-Star Five at FIBA EuroBasket Women.
"It's like the first day of school," commented Datome at the assembling of the team. "There is a lot of talk, but we will be judged on how we play, not what we say.
"It's good to be back and to see all these friendly faces but it's also a lot of work to do from tomorrow on. It's good to see the trophy and have a goal in front of us, to have the top motivation to go to the gym and start preparing with the right frame of mind."
Gallinari echoed the thoughts of Datome, also pointing out the importance of having the trophy in Milan. "It feels great to be back with these guys and to be able to start a new training camp with some new goals and to play at EuroBasket.
"I think it's a great idea [to have the trophy here]. I think this helps to bring more attention and to bring fans to the event. I'm glad that the trophy and the mascot are here today."
Zandalasini spoke of how the public perception of women's basketball in Italy is on the rise following their relative success at FIBA EuroBasket Women 2017, while the country is also currently hosting the FIBA U19 Women's Basketball World Cup, in Udine.
"People found out that there is also women's basketball in Italy after we finished in 7th spot. The first six made it to the FIBA Women's Basketball World Cup so it's a little loss for us but still it was very important. We are on a good way to improve and looking forward to the next FIBA EuroBasket Women."
The next FIBA EuroBasket Women will be hosted by Serbia and Latvia in 2019, whilst Spain will host the FIBA Women's Basketball World Cup next year.