Kings earn record sixth tilt at Scottish Cup final

CITY of Edinburgh Basketball Club overcame fears about their future to book their place in a record sixth Scottish Cup final at Glasgow's Kelvin Hall in three weeks' time.

The Kings, whose committee have expressed deep concern over plans to downgrade facilities in the East of the city at both Portobello High School and Meadowbank and have submitted their own detailed proposals, reached five finals last season, winning three.

Newly-crowned Scottish League champions, the club's senior men, Edinburgh Kings, will face runners-up, Falkirk Fury, in their final on Sunday April 22 and holders Edinburgh Kool Kats will play new league champions St Mirren in the women's final on the same day.

Kings cadets and juniors knocked out both Arbroath Musketeers teams in convincing fashion at Portobello on Saturday and Kool Kats juniors will be clear favourites to complete the double after a comfortable win over Glasgow City; while the Kats cadette team caused the biggest upset of the weekend with their five-point win, also over Glasgow City.

Kings snuffed out Boroughmuir Blaze 91-50 at Wester Hailes to reach their 13th men's final, while Fury fought off holders Troon Tornadoes 87-72 at Falkirk's Mariner Centre. The Kings men, with Laurie Costello the court general and Garreth Lodge the cutting edge, paradoxically owed their big win to another great defensive display.

Lodge scored 23, including nine in the last two minutes, as he warmed up to represent the Scottish Universities against England and Wales in the Home Countries tournament at Riccarton tomorrow and Wednesday.

Kevin Anderson and Simon Flockhart both had 13 and Brett Jefferies 11 for Kings, while Michael McGregor replied with 14 for Blaze.

In the senior women's semis Kool Kats beat Polonia Phoenix 71-47 at Portobello but will face a tough final against St Mirren who won the All-Saints battle with Midlothian 74-59 at Lasswade.

There was another Capital success when Scotland's oldest club, Pleasance, beat last year's runners-up, Perth Phoenix, 61-56 at Dalkeith High School Campus yesterday and will now play Grampian Police in the final.

"We were poor," said Capital referee Chris Dodds, who is now Tayside Development officer and who actually played for the Perth side in yesterday's game.

There was Capital disappointment however when Highland Bears reversed the trend, travelling to Edinburgh to beat Pentland Star 61-32 and reach the final of the Chairman's Cup for women, where they will meet Grangemouth.