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Opals beat GB 87-63 in basketball
04:47 AEST Sun Jul 15 2012

Australia's women basketballers beat Great Britain 87-63 in an Olympic warm-up in Sheffield on Saturday.

Australia centre Liz Cambage scored 12 of her game-high 29 points in the first quarter to help the Opals claim a 28-23 lead.

Poor shooting cost Britain, most obviously in the third quarter when they managed only two points over a seven-and-a-half minute stretch that saw Australia power clear.

Although Cambage's scoring slowed before half-time, her rebounding allowed others to step up and their lead reached double figures on Jenna O'Hea's three-pointer that made it 45-35.

But Britain rallied and when Jo Leedham sank a three-pointer late in the half it was 48-45 to the Australians. The Opals responded, and O'Hea made it 52-45 before Kristi Harrower narrowly missed a half-court shot on the buzzer.

Britain's shooting touch deserted them in the second half and, when Lauren Jackson rolled in a lay-up at the midway point of the third quarter, the Australians led 62-47.

This was the hugely damaging stretch of the game for Britain as Jackson pushed Australia's edge to 20, 67-47, before the points began to flow again.

Britain went into the final quarter trailing 71-54 and could not find a way to bridge the gap.

Leedham led Britain with 12 points and Azania Stewart added 10.

Assisting Cambage, Belinda Snell had 16 points and O'Hea 13.

The defeat showed Britain's Australian coach Tom Maher how much work there is left to do in the next two weeks before they face Australia again in their opening game in London.

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