All four Australian 3×3 basketball teams added to Australia’s medal tally at the Commonwealth Games overnight, as the 3×3 Games’ debut wraps up.
Three of the four Australian teams were vying for gold, with three of the finals decided by two points or less, keeping the ferocious English crowd on the edge of their seats on the final night of 3×3.
It was raining Gold for our men’s wheelchair team, as Australia prevailed over Canada in a thrilling final, securing the first ever Commonwealth Games 3×3 gold medal, 11-9. It was one for one throughout the majority of the game, with Luke Pople’s six points and eight defensive rebounds proving a game changer for the green and gold. Lachlin Dalton was heroic once again, as he recreated his winning semi-final two-point shot late in the gold medal game and granted the slightest of space on the scoreboard.
After an undefeated Games leading up to the gold medal match, it was inaccuracy that hurt the women’s wheelchair team’s chances at locking in the gold. Only managing five points for the game, it was Canada’s efficiency with the ball that made the difference to the match and led to their victory, 14-5, granting the Aussie’s the silver medal.
The third of Australia’s gold medal matches saw our men’s team and host nation England fight it out in a highly physical and contested battle, decided in an overtime thriller. The intensity was highlighted with Australia striking seven fouls mid-way through the match and England quick to follow. Every foul in the second half led to two free throws, which led to several lead changes and 15 a piece at the final buzzer. With the home fans electric in the crowd, it was heartbreak for Australia- who had the upper hand scoring the first of two points needed in overtime- whose fate was sealed by an England clutch two-point basket, locking in a 17-16 final score and silver for our men’s team.
A come-from-behind two-point victory over New Zealand secured the bronze medal for the Australian women’s team. Down by four with 3:29 on the clock, it was a nine-point surge led by Marena Whittle (nine points, six rebounds) in the final minutes that locked in the podium finish, 15-13. A huge defensive effort, highlighted by 15 defensive rebounds across the (Scherf, 5, Wilson, 4, Whittle, 4) proved monumental in their victory.
Four teams, four medals, and we could not be prouder.
Four teams. Four medals! What an amazing night of 3×3 finals at the Commonwealth Games.
— Basketball Australia (@BasketballAus) August 2, 2022