Friendly rivals: Aussie girls go for gold19 January 2013
BASKETBALL: The Australia's female basketballers proved they’re just as tough as the men, with both Green and Gold teams taking out medals at the finals of the AYOF basketball competition.
Like both Gold and Green men’s teams, the Australia Gold women’s team won the gold medal while fellow Australia Green team scored the silver.
There was a buzz on the final day of competition, with the venue changed to Sydney Boys High School the players were relieved to be back on a hard court, releasing an energy translated onto the court.
Early on, Australia Gold went head-to-head with Australia Green, giving both teams a taste of the competition lying ahead.
But while the girls were all smiles off the court, there was still a rivalry on the court.
“We’re all friends off the court but when we’re on the court it’s a whole different ball game,” Alanna Smith from the Gold team said.
In the first women’s semi-final game, Australia Green took on New Zealand and reminded our neighbours what it takes to reach the top.
The New Zealand girls felt the pressure as the Aussies demonstrated fine ball skills, securing the win with a six-point advantage, 16-10.
“We knew it would be tough but we were confident going in to it,” Pare Gilmartin-Kara of the New Zealand team said. “If we made the shots, I think we may have won.”
In the match for the bronze medal, New Zealand defeated China, 17-13.
In a bid to claim the gold, both Green and Gold women’s teams showed no sign of backing down in the final, with great defence from both teams.
Among the Gold team talent was Alanna Smith who, braving two injured knees, proved to be a star player, with great assists to her teammates.
After a nail-biting 10 minutes, the Gold team finished on top with a 16-11 win over the Green team.
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