Eurobasket had the pleasure of speaking with Edgars Cunda (196-G-84, agency: Court Side), currently approaching the midway point of his return to Eastern Europe. Playing for Valga/CKE Inkasso in the Estonian EMKL, he is currently leading the EMKL in both assist and steals.
EU: Edga, how have you found playing in Estonia?
EC: I wanted to come back in Europe.Upportunity was given from Valga team and we made a deal.
EU: What did you know about Estonia before coming this season? What compelled you to play in this market this particular year?
EC: I knew about this league cos this is my home country neighbour. And I have good friend Reinar Hallik (208-C-84) who played in Estonia before so I was informated about league. I came here because we won regular season and play offs in Kazakhstan league so I felt like job is done there and it is new challange for me, specially in point guard position here.
EU: Last season, you won the championship in Kazahkstan with Barsy Atyrau You have had tremendous experiences outside of your home of Latvia, please tell us briefly about them and your reasons for returning to the Baltics this season.
EC: Yes I had interesting experience in Kazakhstan. I learned impotant thinks from coach in Barsy team - Vadim Burakov as well as from other players in the court and besides that. We had a vonderfull colective there and I think that it played very importnat role of our success. I came back to Baltics because as a professional basketball player I have a tendency to push myself for new achievments. So I thought that it would be good step coming back to Europe. So I can see what I capable of here with my new team.
EU: Please outline for us briefly, what has been the path that the team has travelled on this season, and what you see for them in the very near future. We see that you had a rough start to the season. There is a new coach, you are also on a winning streak of sorts. What do u think is on the horizon for in the very near future?
EC: Yes our season start was tuff. Because we came together from different teams and it was hard to feel each other on the floor in begining. The same time other team's main players are playing together for long years. So I think it was the main reason of our bad record. Also we played biggest part of season without 5 position player. But step by step we are improving as a team and as collective. And there is definately one thing that brought us together here - will to win. So I think our wins are infront of us.
EU: With the crucial games looming where do u see valga headed as you prepare for the midseason break? Any key points to improve on for the club? You are only 2 games out of a place in the top 4 teams of the league, with 3 games to play before the holiday break.
EC: I think we have good chances to win one of our last two games. But of course it will not be easy at all. Key point's of our game is that we know each other better now as well as fresh ideas from new coach - Varis Krumins About standings in championship I think what matters the most is the play-offs, so we need to get as much as posible to get better oponent.
EU: It appears that your versatility is posing match-up problesm for for opponents, standing 6'5 or 196cm, you can see over the top of smaller defenders, post up due to your size, & strength, but you are also a good shooter and passer, leading to quite a few double doubles from you this season. Is this going to assist the team as you gear up for the fight for postioning within the EMKL??
EC: Few times I was close to triple double actually.. ha ha ha ;) Of course I will do everything I can to help our team get maximum wins. When I'm on the court I don't think about stats the only thing what I think is to make good decisions in every single situation. So it might be that I don't score to much but give a lot of assists or make good steals and our team win's.. Then I'm really satisfied. Sometimes it might be complitely oposite I score more but have less assists. I'm trying do adjust depending what exact game need's! If I feel that I can use mismatch I do that, if I feel somebody is 'hot' I try to make play's for this player. Also trying to regulate tempo of our team's game. And allways try to go 100% in defence. Only thing what I missing this season is helping guys with offensive rebounds - I like to do that but I can''t do it to much cos I'm point guard here so I allways feel responsibility to be first in defence.
EU: Any thing to share or say to your family in Latvia or fans back in Kazahkstan or Belarus?
EC: I want to say few thing's to young basketball players as well as any young people - never loose faith in your self and work on your weakneses doesn't matter is it on the court or outside basketball court lines. Fallow your dream's by changing things in present and do what ever it takes to come true your dream's. Also I'm sincerely thankfull to my FAMILY my GF- Oksana for support specially in hard moments. Also my friends and all people around me every day who gives me energy to contnue improving and developing as basketball player and as person. And thank's for this nice interview.
WE AT EUROBASKET WOULD LIKE TO WISH EDGARS A STRONG FINISH TO THE 1st HALF OF THE SEASON & WE LOOK TO HEAR MORE GREAT THINGS FROM HIM IN THE VERY NEAR FUTURE. BEST SWISHES EDGARS!
Tanel Kurbas (ex TU/Rock) joins Sodertalje - 2 days ago
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Defending champion Sodertalje Kings (Basketligan) added to their roster 28-year old Estonian international guard Tanel Kurbas (197-88). He has played for the last six seasons at TU/Rock in Estonian Alexela KML. Kurbas managed to play in three leagues last year. In 31 Alexela KML games he had 10.5ppg, 3.7rpg and 2.0apg. He helped them to make it to both league and Cup finals after they ended regular season as second best team. A very spectacular season in his career as he was named to Euro... [read more]
Defending champion Sodertalje Kings (Basketligan) added to their roster 28-year old Estonian international guard Tanel Kurbas (197-88). He has played for the last six seasons at TU/Rock in Estonian Alexela KML. Kurbas managed to play in three leagues last year. In 31 Alexela KML games he had 10.5ppg, 3.7rpg and 2.0apg. He helped them to make it to both league and Cup finals after they ended regular season as second best team. A very spectacular season in his career as he was named to Eurobasket.com All-Estonian League Honorable Mention. Kurbas also played 9 games in FIBA Europe Cup where he recorded 5.8ppg, 3.4rpg and 2.1apg. He also played 6 games in Baltic League where he recorded 10.5ppg, 4.8rpg and 2.2apg. The list of the past achievements is quite long as among others Kurbas won Estonian League championship title in 2009 and 2015. He was also voted Eurobasket.com All-Estonian League Guard of the Year in 2015. Kurbas has been also a member of Estonian international program for some years. He has regularly played for Estonian senior team since 2010 and previously for U20 National Team between 2007 and 2008. Kurbas also represented Estonia at the European Championships last year. His stats at that event were 4 games: 5.3ppg, 2.0rpg, 1.0apg, FGP: 31.3%, 3PT: 33.3%, FT: 88.9%. Kurbas has played also professionally for other Estonian teams like Triobet/Dalkia, Kalev/Cramo and Audentese SG/Noortekoondis.
Parnu Sadam (Alexela KML) signed 21-year old shooting guard Saimon Sutt (200-95). He has played for the last three seasons at TU/Rock in the Alexela KML. He has played there for the last three years. Sutt managed to play in three leagues last year. In 23 Alexela KML games he had 4.1ppg and 1.9rpg. He helped them to make it to both league and Cup finals after they ended regular season as second best team. Sutt also played 3 games in FIBA Europe Cup where he recorded 4.7ppg, 2.0rpg and 1.7a... [read more]
Parnu Sadam (Alexela KML) signed 21-year old shooting guard Saimon Sutt (200-95). He has played for the last three seasons at TU/Rock in the Alexela KML. He has played there for the last three years. Sutt managed to play in three leagues last year. In 23 Alexela KML games he had 4.1ppg and 1.9rpg. He helped them to make it to both league and Cup finals after they ended regular season as second best team. Sutt also played 3 games in FIBA Europe Cup where he recorded 4.7ppg, 2.0rpg and 1.7apg. He also played 3 games in Baltic League where Sutt recorded just 2.0ppg, 1.0rpg and 1.3apg. He represented Estonia at the World University Games in Gwangju (South Korea) last year. His stats at that event were 7 games: 6.6ppg, 3.3rpg, FGP: 34.6%, 3PT: 38.9%, FT: 77.8%.
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