The BHL play-offs start this weekend. Four teams from Estonia, three from Lithuania and one from Latvia will be playing in the quarter-finals.
Estonian and Lithuanian teams will meet in two BHL quarter-final matches. One of the quarter-final matches will be between Granitas-Karys Kaunas and Pölva Serviti. Both coaches agree that the favourite of this matchup is last season’s BHL finalist Pölva Serviti club. Pölva Serviti won 16 points in 10 matches and became the winner of Group B. Granitas won 6 points and remained 4th in Group A.
Vaidotas Grosas (coach, Granitas-Karys):
The clear favourite is the Pölva Serviti club. They have been aiming for the BHL champion title for years. Pölva Serviti is one of the favourites not only for our quarter-final matchup, but also for the whole league. We can find trump cards against them, but I will not give them away (laughs). We will try to surprise our opponents as well as ourselves. Because only by playing super well in the match can we hope for a ticket to the final four. Much will depend on the first home game, so we want to invite as many spectators as possible. We need the support of our fans, as they give us wings.
Kalmer Musting (coach, Pölva Serviti):
I agree that we are the favourites. But play-offs are different from group matches. Here, two matches decide everything. We have not played with Granitas-Karys this season, I have only seen videos of their games. Granitas-Karys have a good squad, although they lost two important players, Lukas Gurskis and Deividas Jovaiša, after last season. We have a tough task ahead of us on Sunday in Kaunas, because our opponents have a well-coordinated play. It is good that we are going to play the second leg at home. Our club has been playing in European tournaments for almost 20 years and I think it is better to play the second leg at home. The home crowd helps a lot in the decisive second match. The home court also matters, as the home players are used to it and the visitors need time to adapt.
The first match between Granitas-Karys and Pölva Serviti will take place on 19 March at 2pm at the LVA sports hall in Kaunas.