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After Independence Day treat, Brazil expecting low-scoring battle with Serbia
MADRID (FIBA Basketball World Cup) - After giving the people of Brazil a present they will not soon forget by beating arch rivals Argentina on Independence Day on Sunday, Marcelinho Huertas and his team-mates are expecting a real battle with Serbia on Wednesday in the Quarter-Finals of the 2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup.
Brazil will enter the game on an emotional high of beating Argentina for the first time at FIBA's flagship event since 1967. They suffered two big losses to their arch rivals in the past four years - at the 2010 FIBA World Championship and at the 2012 Olympics.
The win was also incredibly important as it saw Brazil reache the final eight for the first time since 2002.
For us, it was just a huge win against a good team - Huertas
"I think it was destiny. For us, the most important thing was to get this win. It didn't matter the rival we had. We needed to finally get this win. For most of the Brazilian people, it was over Argentina which probably makes them feel better," said Huertas.
"It's gonna be a different game, a lower score. I don't think any team is going to take a big lead," said the guard, who had six points and five assists in their previous encounter on 3 September.
"When it comes to games like this, defenses are strong, games are more point-by-point. Right now we have to respect Serbia. Their motivation is really, really high after beating Greece, especially the way they did.
We have to be really focused to get this win - Huertas
"They're a very talented team. They have (Nenad) Krstic back now. He's a big-timer for them. They have a very young and talented team with (Nemanja) Bjelica, (Bogdan) Bogdanovic and (Milos) Teosodic. We know he's a killer."
Brazil will want to remember only parts of their first match-up with Serbia, who trailed by 16 points at half-time but built a seven-point lead early in the fourth quarter before failing to hold on.
"The first half was brilliant. We defended like a team, really strong. We could run the floor well. We moved the ball well. We got open shots," said Huertas.
The second half meanwhile was a completely different story. What will the story be in the Quarters?