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07 November, 2021
13 February, 2023
FIBA Women's EuroBasket 2023 Qualifiers Power Rankings, Volume 2
22/11/2022
Long Read
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FIBA Women's EuroBasket 2023 Qualifiers Power Rankings, Volume 2

MUNICH (Germany) - With one FIBA Women's EuroBasket 2023 Qualifiers window in the books and number two of three about to drop, it's an ideal time to check out the second volume of the Power Rankings.

With co-hosts Israel and Slovenia participating in the qualifying windows and guaranteed their place, there are another 34 nations fighting it out for the remaining 14 tickets.

Taking into account the results from the first window, any significant coaching and roster news, what lies ahead in the upcoming games and of course the first edition of the rankings, here's Volume 2 - and there are plenty of big movers, both up and down!

#1 Spain ESP (+1)

Group Record: 2-0
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 4th

You know when something or someone feels missing?  That was Sydney at the FIBA Women's Basketball World Cup without the 2014 edition silver and 2018 edition bronze medalists - it just felt weird. But that is important fuel towards getting back onto the FIBA Women's EuroBasket Women podium. One glance at Spain's social media graphic of their roster and you can take your pen and tick, tick, tick, over and over again checking the quality. Alba Torrens, Maria Conde, Astou Ndour etc... Spain are on their way back! 

#2 Serbia SRB  (+5)

Group Record: 1-0
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 8th

Just when the reigning champions look decidedly vulnerable after the departure of Jelena Brooks, Sonja Vasic and no Ana Dabovic or Aleksandra Crvendakic at the FIBA Women's Basketball World Cup, playcaller Marina Maljkovic pulls a rabbit from the hat. The newer generation like Ivana Raca and Jovana Nogic stepped up. Plus, Crvendakic will re-appear from injury at just the right time and was awesome in the big win over Croatia last year. Serbia are favorites to top their group for sure. 

#3 Italy ITA   (+5)

Group Record: 2-0
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 16th

Get ready to sound the qualification klaxon surely? Italy have a generous group draw with Switzerland and Luxembourg, have navigated their trickiest test on paper by winning a tight one in Slovakia and now have two home games coming up. Yes, the basketball sun is shining right now. Jasmine Keys is on an upward trajectory, they have the clutch of Cecilia Zandalasini and seemingly more depth than in previous years, with the options extending all the time with so many young guns coming through a glorious talent pipeline.

#4 Latvia LAT   (+5)

Group Record: 2-0
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 24th

Locked and loaded at 2-0 and with a home game next against Israel, what a time ot be alive for Latvia fans. Their 89-70 demolition of Sweden was highly impressive and if they put that intensity into the game with Sweden, they will have ne foot and four toes in the main event next year. The experience of Elina Babkina, outside threat of Kitija Laksa and strength under the hoop of Anete Steinberga gives them a great foundation and it's unthinkable they will push the self-destruct button. TRhey ready to get the party started.

What a roller-coaster it has been for France during the last 12 months or so

#5 France FRA  (-4)

Group Record: 1-1
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 6th

It's mind-blowing that since their Tokyo bronze, they have lost 6 of 11 games. Injuries or absences are mitigation, but not excuses for such spectacular inconsistency. They have to do the basics. For example, if you had wanted to actually see them get offensive rebounds at the FIBA Women's Basketball World Cup, you would still be sat waiting in Sydney now. It's a blow that their newly established leader Gabby Willliams and former leader Sandrine Gruda are both absent. But with Marine Johannes, Iliana Rupert and the returning Valeriane Vukosavljevic, they can surely get back on track - plus young Pauline Astier who's killing it.

#6 Turkey TUR   (+6)

Group Record: 2-0
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 11th

Say what? Turkey looked unstoppable in the first window as they hammered Slovenia on the road and beat Poland at home. Now they are looking to push home their advantage with a new naturalized player. As if Quanitra Hollinsworth or Kiah Stokes was not enough previously, now they have the epically strong Teaira McCowan in the mix. The Albania game will be a cakewalk and the Slovenia game should be one of the best of the window. Turkey are in a great position to more or less seal the deal for a ticket if they win that contest.

#7 Greece GRE  (+10)

Group Record: 2-0
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 17th

Bring out a massive pile of dinner plates and brace yourself for a smashing time. Greece could be one of the first nations to stamp their pass to the main event. They're 2-0 and now have two home games to come in this window. They've got Artemis Spanou and Maria Fasoula in the paint and Angeliki Nikolopoulou handing out almost 7 asissts per game in EuroLeague Women. They've been lifted up a massive 10 spots, so they had better not dare to make this ranking look foolish!

#8 Montenegro MNE   (+3)

Group Record: 1-0
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 20th

Most of the eggs are in the Markeisha Gatling basket - we hear you. They're praying things such as foul trouble don't come into the equation, but Montenegro can see off a dangerous Denmark and underdogs Austria. However, the alarm bells might be going off and make this ranking look generous after Milica Jovanovic got injured. The backcourt is in good hands with Bozica Mujovic and rising star Marija Lekovic, but yes,  they're still a possible upset victim from Denmark and will just have to ride that mini storm - if it comes.

2023 co-hosts Slovenia lost big to Turkey in the opening window in Coach Giorgios Dikauoulakos' first game

#9 Slovenia SLO  (-4)

Group Record: 1-1
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 19th

What a bitter-sweet start it was for head coach Georgios Dikaioulakos as Slovenia crashed and burned in a spectacular way at home to Turkey in his first game at the helm. A false start? We still don't know because recovering against Albania did not get much back in the credit bank. The antidote to the lack of Turkish delight for Dikaioulakos is that as co-hosts, Slovenia don't need to sweat on their spot. Now they must show their real face through leading ballers Teja Oblak, Zala Friskovec and Eva Lisec. Not having Nika Baric is a blow.

#10 Bosnia and Herzegovina BIH  (+3)

Group Record: 2-0
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 14th

Yes, this is conveniently ignoring the nightmare maiden FIBA Women's Basketball World Cup appearance which was one to forget. Has team confidence been destroyed? It's maybe not Belgium that poses the threat necessarily as they make sure they at least win their other games in this group. Germany might be tricky and especially without Jonquel Jones - although Courtney Hurt is a solid replacement. However the main factor will be the rest of the roster not freezing like they did on a global debut Down Under.

#11 Belgium BEL  (-7)

Group Record: 1-1
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 7th

The Cats were supposed to extract revenge on Bosnia and Herzegovina for their humbling at the FIBA Women's EuroBasket 2021, but instead suffered another loss in the first window. That has put them under a big pressure to win this possibly do or die second meeting and it will not be easy mentally,  even if Emma Meesseman is back firing, since Julie Allemand continues to miss out. Also, don't worry if you're losing track of Belgium playcallers. Rachid Meziane was promoted from to the head coach role recently to cover the departing Valery Demory and he is now the third head coach in 15 months. But it's still in Belgium's hands, so they can climb these rankings in the near future.

#12 Ukraine UKR  (+9)

Group Record: 2-0
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 25th

What a difference a year makes and especially for Ukraine. They celebrated a legendary19 point mauling of France and a hard-fought win against Finland. With a glorious opportunity to advance, the real test will be whether they can do the double over Lithuania in the remaining games - assuming they would find it tough to beat France on the road, that might be essential. Alina Iagupova will need to play and like in the first window, but can anybody else step up? Olga Dubrovina and Tetiana Yurkevichus were sensational.

Slovakia pushed Italy very hard in their first meeting and it was just a one-shot game

#13 Slovakia SVK   (+1)

Group Record: 1-1
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 23rd

Even if they are maybe favorites to be 0-2 against Italy, they should win all other games and if it is another tight one against the Italians, they could be well placed to be one of the best runner-ups. Okay yes, we should put the crystal ball and calculator away.... If Barbora Wrzesinski, Ivana Jakubcova and Zofia Hruscakova  come to play, Slovakia might just sneak into the top 16.

#14 Czech Republic CZE   (+6)

Group Record: 1-0
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 22nd

The fact that Emese Hof won't be available for Netherlands hands a big advantage to the Czech Republic. It's no guarantee as the Dutch are not a one-baller team. but the momentum shuuld swing towards the Czechs. Especially as they have the physical presence of Julia Reisingerova to capitalize. Yet ironically, it may be the three-point shooting that puts them through as that was a feature in the first window.

#15 Hungary HUN  (+3)

Group Record: 1-1
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 27th

This might just be the Power Rankings equivalent of a turnover waiting to happen. Maybe Hungary being in the top 16 with a loss to Spain already banked and road trips to a tricky Romania and favorites Spain coming up is way too ambitious? Especially as they're without Bernadett Hatar too. But the defeat to Spain was close and Cyesha Goree is killing it in EuroLeague Women, Reka Lelik can do damage. Agnes Studer is also playing decent and so could they sneak in when the final shake up comes? Not convincing you, are we?

Eden Rotberg will be one of the Israeli players who needs to deliver if they are to get a first win in the Group

#16 Israel ISR  (-)

Group Record: 0-1
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 54th

Death, taxes and Israel staying at number 16 in the Power Rankings for every volume. Is that fair? Will they really occupy the last spot up until the curtain is raised at the big show? It's a stage Yarden Garzon will shine on as one of the most talented up and coming forwards on the Continent. The big question is what is around her? Israel will feel they can beat Sweden if the likes of Daniel Raber, Eden Rotberg and Gill Eisner show up. Israel don't need to win to qualify, but they need to prove they'll be competitive next summer.

#17 Portugal POR   (+6)

Group Record: 1-1
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 51st

Let's just put this rumor to bed. Portugal have not been elevated six places because of the viral courtside dance video of Joana Soeiro that attracted more than 40 million views. As captivating as it was, Portugal might have to come up with a new dance should they finally book that long overdue ticket to the main phase next summer. Opportunity knocks and knocks loudly! With Great Britain 0-2, is this the green light for Portugal to take advantage? Laura Oliveira Ferreira and Sofia Silva are likely to carry the fight as usual.

#18 Sweden SWE  (-3)

Group Record: 0-1
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 18th

Losing  the long-serving Elin and Frida Eldebrink, plus the likes of Louice Halvarsson is so fundamental that Sweden had might as well remove the yellow and blue colors from their flag. You can put a cape on young Klara Lundquist, but she needs help. Maybe she has a twin sister hidden away for the full regeneration? Then again, it looks like Amanda Zahui is back on board and so even if the first window was a shocker, this one simply has to rock, or it's adjo to a Finals ticket. 

Croatia will continue to be heavily reliant on the free-scoring Ivana Dojkic

#19 Croatia CRO   (-)

Group Record: 1-1
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 29th

Too good for the likes of Bulgaria, but not enough to beat a leading nation like Serbia. Or at least that is how it looks and feels. In a survey (that didn't really happen), 99 percent of people said Croatia would finish 2-2, beating Bulgaria twice and losing to Serbia twice. And so surely, this will come to pass. Or, is there a nasty sting in this tale (should it not be tail?) or a pleasant derby win surprise in February? They need Ivana Dojkic to go off, off, off to make another major tournament and she is likely to miss this window. Ouch

#20 Denmark DEN  (+7)

Group Record: 1-0
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 56th

Where were you when Denmark beat Romania in the 2021 Qualifiers? This should be added to the list of similar such questions of the big historical events of our times. Is there another ahead? Montenegro beware! The investment in attending youth tournaments in recent times is paying off.  Led by kingpin (or maybe better queenpin) Maria Jespersen they are a tricky, tricky customer. Might it be that they should have sneaked into the top 16 of this list, since one win against Montenegro and they might make it? 

#21 Lithuania LTU  (+4)

Group Record: 1-1
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 34th

Lots of talent but they always get the dirty end of the stick when it comes to the draw. But they must also stand up taller and punch harder (not literally, obviously!). Watching Juste Jocyte at youth level is like watching Hall of Famer Jurgita Streimikyte-Virbickiene at her peak. But it's a whole different sauce on the senior stage. Gintare Petronyte, Laura Juskaite, Kamile Nacickaite and so on. They need two wins against Ukraine and Finland in this window and maybe they will get them.

Leonie Fiebich has been in good form in EuroCup Women so will be looking to continue that in a NT jersey

#22 Germany GER  (-)

Group Record: 1-1
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 37th

An enigma! Germany are the women's basketball team that we all wait to see get launched to bigger and brighter things, but mission control can't quite get all the ingredients together to push the button. If everyone was available, such as the Sabally sisters, they would be a big deal. They have some excellent younger ballers and will still find it tough against Belgium, but maybe they can down a Jones-less Bosnia and Herzegovina. Luisa Gieselsoder and the in-form Leonie Fiebich are probably the ones to watch!

#23 Poland POL  (+1)

Group Record: 1-1
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 44th

Defensively, Poland can lock you down and swallow they key. Offensively, they are 20-25 points short of being a big danger. Some cynics might say that translated, this is one  good naturalized player away from qualifying. On a more serious note, they do have talent coming through such as 20-year-old Magdalena Szymkiewicz who has lit it up in EuroCup Women. A shock against Turkey or Slovenia can't be ruled out, but it looks doubtful.

#24 Estonia EST  (+7)

Group Record: 1-1
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 60th

They were dancing on the streets of Tallinn this time last year after beating Great Britain in one of the biggest shocks in recent memory, although maybe dancing on the highly dangerous November ice would be an equally or even more  impressive feat. Congratulations to head coach Kaspars Majenieks and his team. But could they really cause another upset? Perhaps. Kadri-Ann Lass is a real talent and Maaja Bratka a tower of strength. Maybe this was just the start, or maybe it was the peak. Either way, it was a brilliant win.

#25 Great Britain GBR  (-15)

Group Record: 0-2
FIBA World Ranking presented by Nike: 21st

The 2019 Semi-Finalists should not lose to an underdog like Estonia. Last November was a near catastrophe for Chema Buceta and his squad. Their chances of progressing are hanging by the finest of threads as they not only need to win out, they will probably only have any chance of making it if Estonia are bottom and that desperate loss is not taken into account. Even with Temi Fagbenle in the paint it will be tough and especially now that the in-form London Lions' star Holly Winterburn as been ruled out with an injury.

The rest of the field


#26 Netherlands -
#27 Romania +3
#28 Bulgaria -
#29 Finland -
#30 Switzerland +2
#31 Luxembourg +3
#32 Iceland +1
#33 North Macedonia +2
#34 Ireland +2
#35 Austria +2
#36 Albania +2

*The power rankings are entirely subjective and is in no way a true, accurate ranking system. All comments are purely those of the author.

Paul Nilsen

Paul Nilsen

The FIBA Women's EuroBasket 2023 Qualifiers Power Rankings are put together by our panel, led by FIBA's women's basketball specialist Paul Nilsen. He eats, sleeps and breathes female hoops and is incredibly passionate about the promotion of the women's game at all levels. Paul uses an extensive network of players, coaches, clubs and Federations to shape his work and opinions.