Great Britain stayed on track for EuroBasket Women 2019 by edging Israel 76-74.

Temi Fagbenle notched 20 points and added 14 rebounds in Tel Aviv for GB, including one last board off a final shot from the hosts in the dying seconds which would have forced overtime.

Instead, Chema Buceta’s side sit top of Group D with one more round of games left to play.

“It was a fantastic game, to see the girls fighting to improve,” the coach said. “It was very wise play. Our team played with a lot of sense, overcoming the problems Israel put on the court.”

It was another tenacious showing, even after Israel rebounded from an early deficit to lead 17-13 after the first quarter.

Stef Collins, who scored 19 and added ten rebounds in one of her best all-round displays for GB, led a three-point assault that ensured that her side trailed 39-36 at half-time.

Great Britain saved their best for last (Mansoor Ahmed)

Karlie Samuelson finally broke out of her drought with eight points in the third, the hosts still led narrowly but repeated defensive switches and an 11-1 run proved decisive in swinging the momentum.

And although Shay Doron drained a jumper that cut GB’s lead to 73-72 with 71 seconds left, Fagbenle’s last trip to the foul line provided just enough breathing space as Doron’s hopeful effort missed its mark.

“It was crazy, an awesome game to be a part of,” Samuelson, who scored 13, said. “The key was playing together as a team, a lot of different people scoring. We played together on defence – getting stops down the end was key.”

Seattle Storm forward Alysha Clark had 20 points and 11 rebounds for the hosts.

Earlier in Group D, Greece thrashed Portugal 81-59 but with two home games to finish off with in November – against Portugal and the Greeks – GB chances of reaching Latvia-Serbia in 2019 are solid.

Standings. 1. Great Britain 3-1, 2. Greece 3-1,  3. Israel 2-2, 4. Portugal 0-4

Game stats

Photos: Mansoor Ahmed

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