05 October, 2016
12 April, 2017
24 Jessica Kuster (PEAC Pécs) (photo: Viktor Rebay)
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PEAC-Pecs out to cause an upset in Round of 16

PECS (EuroCup Women) – It’s been a long road to the EuroCup Women Round of 16 for Hungarian side PEAC-Pecs and now they are ready to spring a surprise against one of the tournament’s front-runners.

Having started their quest way back during the first week of October in the Qualifiers with a double-digit home loss to Piestanske Cajky, they could barely have dreamed of now looking forward to a Round of 16 meeting with Turkish juggernauts Galatasaray.

It was the 78-64 success on the road in Slovak Republic during the second leg of that opening Qualifier which proved to be the watershed for Pecs - and the drama didn’t stop there.

To reach this stage of the competition, they had to collect a derby victory during the last week of the Regular Season against PINKK Pecsi 424. They duly obliged with a resounding 71-48 triumph - a result which also made amends for having fallen at the first hurdle last season.

"It was a very important match for us as we wanted to show that we had the better team," reflected the influential Jessica Kuster, who has led the way with more than 13 points and six rebounds per game so far.

"I love to go on the court with an extra motivation and that was down to what was at stake in that game.

"It was an attractive challenge for us and we’re really happy that we managed to get into the Round of 16."

Now in their fourth consecutive season in the competition, PEAC-Pecs have the chance to continue showing their qualities. They will be hoping to go one step further than two years ago, when they bowed out at this stage against Turkish opposition, in the shape of Besiktas.

After watching their team lose the first game of the Qualifiers by ten points back in October, fans in Pecs are now ready to welcome Galatasaray on Wednesday

But the scale of the challenge will be enormous. Galatasaray have not lost a single game all season and have some huge talents in the likes of backcourt stars Moriah Jefferson and Isil Alben.

They also have play-caller Marina Maljkovic even more focused on the task in hand, now that she has stepped down from her coaching duties with Serbia.

But her namesake Boris Maljkovic is looking forward to his PEAC-Pecs side continuing to show their attributes this season.

He said: "As a team, we have proved we are strong and that we have a winning character.

"This is a very important step we have taken [to get this far] and we are proud to be in the Round of 16."

The first leg will take place in Pecs on Wednesday, with the return leg at the Abdi Ipekci Arena on 25 January.