Basketball: Scotland left to survey the wreckage after mauling by Welsh

Injury-hit Scotland were bewailing bad luck and absent friends after slumping to sixth, their lowest-ever place, in the Euro C Basketball Championship which finished in Malta on Saturday.

A 75-49 walloping by Wales, one of our worst-ever defeats to the principality, only rubbed salt in the wounds and left Scotland one place worse than the previous lowest, fifth in San Marino in 1996.

Only 18-year-old Josh Crolley (Cumnock) with 12 points and Ike Attah (Teesside Mohawks) with ten points took much credit for the Scots who were without three of their starting five players and badly missed absent stars Gareth Murray (Arbroath) and West Linton's Roni Gordon (Falkirk). Shooting guard Steve Leven, who controversially made the All Star Five despite missing two games with a black eye, and playmaker Laurie Costello (Edinburgh Kings) both sat out the final play-off game through injuries, while Troon's Ross Campbell had already gone home with his father, coach Tom Campbell, due to his grandmother's illness. "Without most of our back court players there was little we could do, though I give them full marks for effort, especially in the second half," said stand-in coach Bob Taft.

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Simon Flockhart insisted on playing despite the barely-healed scars of battle on both his eye and chin but sadly his Edinburgh Kings clubmate Paddy Campbell was unable to repeat his encouraging form of the previous day's extended run v Gibraltar and had a nightmare shooting day, missing all 11 attempts from the field, though he did convert three free throws.

Gareth Lodge, the only authentic point guard in the line-up, and a starter with Campbell and Flockhart, again had too many turn-overs. Mike Gregory had 22 and Jordan Seely 16 for Wales who led 37-21 at half-time.

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