European glory for GB men's wheelchair basketball team

GB men's wheelchair basketball team. Pic: SA Images
The GB men celebrate their gold medal win in Israel

Great Britain's men's wheelchair basketball team sealed their first European title since 1995, with a 76-65 victory over Germany in Israel.

The GB team, bronze medalists at the last two Paralympic Games, had been runners-up in 2005 and 2007.

They led 49-41 at the break and, thanks to 30 points apiece from Simon Munn and Terry Bywater, retained their lead.

Britain's women earlier won bronze with a comfortable 60-47 victory over France.

It was a return to form after a disappointing semi-final defeat against the Netherlands, with Helen Freeman top-scoring on 28 points.

GB women's head coach, Garry Peel, said: "It was a good performance; we really should have beaten them a lot easier than we did.

"We went ahead in the first quarter then we switched off and made real hard work of it and had to use the full court press all the way through the game to keep the French from scoring.

"But I'm pleased we came back and won the bronze, but disappointed really as I believe we should have been in the final."

In the men's final, both teams came out strongly but Munn and Bywater helped GB to a 27-16 advantage by the end of the quarter, but they committed a number of turnovers in the second quarter and Germany got back into the game.

GB narrowly extended their lead in a scrappy third quarter but in the fourth quarter some great team work and outstanding shooting gave them the win.

GB coach, Murray Treseder was full of praise for his side afterwards.

"I thought it was a magnificent team performance," he said. "We stuck to our game plan and our disciplines and it showed.

"Resting Simon in other games of the tournament certainly showed as I thought he had a staggering game for a 43-year-old.

"All the guys contributed very well and I'm very very proud of each one of them and delighted to take home the top prize."

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