Blatt’s GB test
David Blatt is confident Russia can challenge for a medal at the Olympic Games in London.
Born in Israel, Blatt has been running an intense schedule as he juggles the roles of coach of Maccabi Tel Aviv and the Russian Olympic team.
Russia's involvement was only confirmed earlier this month when they beat Nigeria 88-75 in an Olympic qualification tournament in Venezuala.
Blatt said: "We deserve to be in London but we made it hard for ourselves against Nigeria. We should have finished off the match early but let them get back into it."
MTA, Israeli basketball champions, want Blatt to step down from his commitments to the Russian team after the Olympics. He has coached Russia since 2006 winning the European Championships in 2007 and finishing ninth in the Beijing Olympics.
Blatt will be looking to get Russia off to a winning start against Great Britain on Sunday.