- National Teams
England under-16’s saw their promotion hopes take a hit at the European Championships after being beaten 87-76 by Israel in their first Group E encounter on Tuesday.
Alan Keane’s side fell to an 0-2 record as their earlier defeat to Belgium was carried forward and their fate is primarily out of their hands to make the semi-finals.
An Israel win over Belgium on Wednesday would keep England’s hopes alive and they in turn would have to beat Slovenia by 7 points to sneak through.
Luke Mitchell top scored with 19 points while Dominic Scott-Robinson added 15 and there were 11 points for Rayell Eytle-Rock. Michael Mor Brisker proved a thorn in England’s side with 19 points on 5/9 3-point shooting while Barak Orion added a 14-13 double-double.
England led 7-5 early on before Israel went on a 14-0 run to take a commanding early lead in the opening quarter. England hit back with a 9-0 response before Scott-Robinson and Brisker finished the first with a mini-shootout, trading 3-pointers back and forth as Israel led 25-19.
Brisker extended the lead with another three in the second and Israel’s advantage soon peaked at 15 points at 40-25. England fought back to narrow the gap to 12 going into the half-time break, trailing 49-37.
England continued to chip away at the deficit in the third quarter and outscored their opponents 25-15 to haul themselves right back into contention, ending the quarter with the final seven points to make it 64-62, narrowly in Israel’s favour.
The gap remained at two points with 5:32 remaining but Israel’s 5-0 burst gave them some breathing space in the final stages. With 1:34 to go, the score was 79-74 and Brisker netted another 3 before his side sealed the win from the foul line to remain undefeated.
England take on Slovenia in their final Group E game at 17:45 UK time on Wednesday.