Turkey is threatening to leave the tournament if they do not receive security footage of the incident
EuroBasket 2022 took a bizarre turn on Sunday during Georgia’s double-overtime win over Turkey. According to Turkish officials, Furkan Korkmaz was attacked near the locker room by Georgian players after he was ejected from the game, and the federation is threatening to leave the tournament if they do not receive security footage of the incident.
In the middle of the fourth quarter, Korkmaz, got into it with Georgia’s Duda Sanadze. The two players butted heads and exchanged words before they were separated by other players and officials. Both players were immediately ejected from the game as fans started throwing cups onto the court.
That should have been the end of the problems, but trouble continued off the court. In addition to the alleged attack on Korkmaz, Turkish officials claim that dozens of Georgian police — the game was being played in Tbilisi — continued the violence after the game.
Here are the full comments from Turkish federation vice president Omer Onan:
“While Furkan Korkmaz was walking in the hallway to the locker rooms with our trainer, Georgia’s players who were not in the active roster attacked him together with the ejected player (Duda Sanadze) and the police. There should not be an attack on the player that goes to the locker room. At the end of the match, 30 policemen each pushed us into a fight. We got into a fight with Georgia’s official police. I am calling out to FIBA and I have also told FIBA’s officials. Let no one deceive themselves or think that we are stupid. They will bring us all the camera footage from that corridor minute by minute without anything missing. If those cameras do not come to us, we will leave this tournament.”
“Wherever you look it, there is nothing to hold onto. The non-competing player, Shengelia, and three people sitting on the bench went to the locker room. At the end of the match, the police were in front of our locker room. Supposedly they were protecting us but they pushed us all the time. We were going to hit each other with our fists.”
And from Turkish assistant coach Hakan Demir, who was speaking to the media because head coach Ergin Ataman was also ejected from the game:
“Today, the Georgian players and some security guards in the hallway disrespected us. We came here to play basketball, not for anything else. So everything should stay on the court, but unfortunately, a big scandal took place off the court. Such things do not suit the spirit of sports. A basketball game was supposed to be played today, but unfortunately what happened went beyond basketball. We have two more games left in Georgia and, unfortunately, what happened in the corridors today was against the spirit of the sport. We expected a more gentlemanly treatment, but unfortunately, it did not happen.”
“There was a basketball game with two overtimes on the court. Sometimes we played well and sometimes Georgia played well, but after our player, Furkan Korkmaz, was disqualified, three opposing team players attacked him in the corridors, while security guards attacked our player and our trainer. We came here to play basketball, not box. Therefore, we are very disturbed by the security weakness experienced today. We will follow up on this issue as well.”
Furthermore, Turkey has lodged an official protest of the game, claiming that 22 seconds mysteriously ran off the clock during the incident between Korkmaz and Sanadze. To that point, it’s worth noting that Sandro Mamukelashvili scored a game-tying layup with two seconds remaining to send the game to overtime.