Gliders win against Brazil in their 2012 Paralympic opening match

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Saturday, September 1, 2012

Aussie fans at the game
Image: Laura Hale.

London, England — The Gliders, the Australia women's national wheelchair basketball team, won a close contest 52–50 against Brazil Thursday night in front of a crowd of 3,288 at the Basketball Arena in Olympic Park, London.

The Gliders have won medals at the last three Paralympics, but have yet to win a gold medal.

The game was close and tough. The scores were tied fifteen times and at no point were the Australians more than five points in front. Before the game and at each break, the Australians linked arms in a common affirmation of teamwork.

A couple of minutes into the final quarter the 45–43 with Cobi Crispin sent to the free throw line where she extended her team's lead to 47–43. A technical foul saw her straight back again to make it 48–43, the Glider's biggest lead of the game.

Brazil then struck back scoring five unanswered points to tie the score again at 48–48 but Amber Merritt then scored one from the paint to put the Gliders back in front. She followed this by taking a rebound and another great shot to make it 52–48. Brazil was able to score once more, but the clock was now against them. Time ran out, and the Gliders ran out the winners, 52–50.

Leading scorers for the Gliders were Cobi Crispin with 18 points and Amber Merritt with 16.

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