Great Britain women book Eurobasket finals spot despite loss

26 June 2014 / 09:47

Great Britain women’s basketball head coach Peter Buckle believes his side are firmly on the up after they secured qualification for the 2015 EuroBasket finals, despite losing their final game against Lithuania 70-63.

With four victories out of their first five games in Group B, the team were well positioned to qualify for a third successive time.

And the final game against Lithuania at the University of Worcester Arena proved a tight encounter with the women, missing standout forward Temi Fagbenle, staying in touch right until the final quarter.

Lithuania then rattled off ten of the next 12 points to take control of the game and eventually run out winners for top spot in the group.

But with Bulgaria also beating Israel in another qualifying group, Great Britain still saw their qualification confirmed for next year’s finals in Hungary and Romania.

And Buckle, who watched Rachael Vanderwal lead the scoring with 13 points and Azania Stewart add 11 points and 12 rebounds, believes it was a complete team effort.

"I am so very proud of my team," he said.

"We have qualified for EuroBasket Women 2015 and I think we have done so with limited preparation time, with everyone just having to come together and perform.

"Our experienced players have all stood up to be counted as leaders, while all our inexperienced and new or younger players have all come in and done a fantastic job.

"We have shown everyone once again what Great Britain basketball is all about and we feel that we are a team on the rise.

"We are coming up the world rankings and we want to continue to grow."

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