Basketball: Tall Ferns claim massive upset

Micaela Cocks. Photo / Getty
Micaela Cocks. Photo / Getty

The Tall Ferns have claimed one of their biggest scalps, downing world number three ranked Spain 54-52 this morning.

Spain won silver at the 2014 Women's World Cup, but were edged by the 22nd-ranked Tall Ferns in possibly their finest result in recent memory.

Jillian Harmon was again the standout performer for the Tall Ferns with 14 points and 10 rebounds, while Micaela Cocks had 12 points. Young duo Penina Davidson and Chevannah Paalvast both had nine points and eight rebounds.

Tall Ferns head coach Kennedy Kereama was thrilled with his side's performance.

"These moments are pretty special but it only lasts a short time because we have to back up and play them again tomorrow. We need to show that this was no fluke and we can also improve on this game. We need to grind teams down with our defence and keep teams to low scores if we want to compete with the best.

The win continues the improvement shown by the Tall Ferns after being smoked first up on their tour by China, and shows promising signs before the first Olympic qualifying game on June 13.

The two teams meet again tomorrow, before the Tall Ferns take on France (4th ranked) and Cuba (13th ranked) in their pool at the Olympic Qualifiers.

Two of those three sides will make the quarterfinals, with the top five sides earning a trip to Rio.

- NZ Herald

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