INTRODUCTION: Basketball, and the fourth Philips World Invitation Club Championships began at London's Crystal Palace on New Year's Day.
GV INT Murray International Metal, Edinburgh, (in red) attack and score basket
GV Crowd applaud
GV TUS 04 Bayer Leverkussen (in white) counter-attack and score. MIM build up attack but lose possession. Leverkusen attack, ball goes out
CU Scoreboard at quarter time: MIM 26; TUS 28
GV Leverkusen attack, fail three times to score, but eventually gain a basket.
GV Leverkusen attack and score
CU Scoreboard showing final score:MIM 64; TUS 66
GV Crowd watching
GV UBSC Vienna (in red) attack and score. Solent stars (in blue) counterattack and score (2 shots)
CU Scoreboard: Solent Stars 47, Vienna 31
GV Vienna attack and score
CU Scoreboard: Solent Stars 53; Vienna 43
GV Vienna attack and score. Solent Stars counter-attack and score
GV Crowd applauding
GV Vienna attacking and player fouled
SV Referee indicated penalty
GV Vienna take penalty and score both times, Solent Stars throw in, attack and score, players congratulate each other ZOOM IN CU Final Scoreboard: Solent Stars 87; Vienna 89
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Background: INTRODUCTION: Basketball, and the fourth Philips World Invitation Club Championships began at London's Crystal Palace on New Year's Day. Twelve leading clubs from countries as wide apart as Finland and Australia, are taking part at a number of venues.
SYNOPSIS: Home crowds had an early chance to support a British team - Murray International Metal, from Edinburgh, in the red uniforms. They were one of three British teams competing in the quarter finals - the first time this has happened. Their opponents were the noted West German club, TUS 04 Bayer Leverkusen. The first quarter set a pattern that lasted throughout the game - fast and evenly-contested. The difference in the score seldom stretched beyond a few points, and the match got the tournament off to a lively start.
Leverkusen were fast, and kept moving the ball neatly into scoring positions, but their basket-shooting lacked accuracy.
As the game progressed, the Bavarian side looked sharper. Eventually, they won by two points - sixty-six to sixty-four. Kleen scored 17 points for them, and Miller, 16.
The Austrian champions, UBSC Vienna, in the red, also beat a British team, in a match of widely-fluctuating scores. Their opponents, Solent Stars lost a 20-point lead before going down by 89 points to 87. Solent weren't able to recover after their tallest player, Mark Saiers, broke a forefinger of his shooting hand. The first half was a fine spectacle, with both sides displaying impeccable teamwork.
Like many top-notch basketball clubs, both of these sides have a heavy sprinkling of American players. The Austrians had the more telling batch of imports. Taller and generally heavier than their opponents, they used their power to wipe out Solent's large early lead.
After a half of seething tension, free throws were to decide the match in the final minute. Poiger sank two baskets for Vienna, and these proved to be the winning points. By sad contrast, Solent were to miss three out of four, though they did round off the scoring. Altogether, it had been a dramatic game, worthy of a final, let alone an early encounter in a four-day tournament. It would have stimulated keen interest among those in the holiday crowd watching class basketball for the first time.