It was a rollercoaster. But Great Britain slid to a 93-71 defeat to Greece.

An amazing start in Larissa.

Then a gradual decline that picked up speed and momentum as the hosts overturned a 12-1 deficit to effectively clinch top spot in Group B of the First Round of FIBA World Cup qualifiers.

It avenged their shock loss in Newcastle last November and leaves Nate Reinking’s side needing to beat Turkey by 18 points or more on Tyneside on Sunday to take second place in the group on a head to head.

Not easy, despite some solid play from debutant Patrick Whelan and a game-high 23 points from the returning Myles Hesson.

The visitors buckled in the third quarter when they were outscored 30-10 and missed nine consecutive field goal attempts in a six minute drought.

Having led 39-38 at the break, that was enough to give Greece an unassailable advantage. And, paced by 16 points from Dimitrios Agravanis, they continued to pull away and went 78-52 ahead with 7:05 remaining in the fourth.

“I thought we played a great first half,” Reinking said. “After half-time the pressure that they put on wore us down a bit. We didn’t handle it as well as we’d like and we turned it over for 26 points which was hard to overcome.”

The home bench outscored their guests 46-8 with Carl Wheatle adding 15 points for GB.

Game Stats

Standings: 1. Greece (3-1), 2. Turkey (1-2), 3. Great Britain (1-2) (All teams qualify for Second Round after expulsion of Belarus)

Photo: FIBA

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • MySpace
  • Print

You must be logged in to post a comment Login