Basketball: Hatters star Gandy leads GB to opening victory

Steph Gandy with an MVP award as a Hatter was in fine form for Great Britain against Serbia.
Steph Gandy with an MVP award as a Hatter was in fine form for Great Britain against Serbia.
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Sheffield Hatters Steph Gandy played a key role in leading Great Britain to a 76-68 victory over Serbia in their opening match at EuroBasket in France today.

Gandy scored 13 points in 18 minutes as Great Britain rallied from a seven point deficit heading into the final quarter in Trelaze.

Great Britain led 18-13 at the end of the first quarter but saw their opponents out-score them in the second period to trim the deficit back to 41-38.

Serbia dominated after the interval to level the match at 43-43 before taking a 59-52 lead with ten minutes to play.

However, five points from Gandy early in the fourth quarter brought the British back within touching distance and a three from Rachel Vanderwal gave them the lead back for good at 67-65.

A further 9-3 run to close the match made the win safe and Great Britain will head into Sunday’s game with Latvia needing another victory to almost certainly confirm their place in the tournament’s second round.

Tournament favourites France are their last Group C opponents on Monday night.

Gandy’s Hatters’ colleague Lauren Thomas-Johnson is also in the Great Britain squad and club head coach Vanessa Ellis is an assistant coach with the team.

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