Great Britain’s Women booked their place in the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games quarter-finals with a 75:38 victory and a super performance against Australia.
Laurie Williams top-scored with 18 points and Helen Freeman posted a double-double, leading the game figures for both rebounds and assists, but it was a complete team performance from ParalympicsGB to set-up a quarter-final meeting with Group B winners China on Tuesday (31 August).
ParalympicsGB were determined to bounce back after a tough start to their Tokyo 2020 campaign and it was brilliant response by the whole team in what was a must-win game for both nations at the Ariake Arena.
Their determination was clear from the onset, the passion from the bench and a high-energy and confident start from the GB starting five of Charlotte Moore, Joy Haizelden, Laurie Williams, Helen Freeman and Amy Conroy set the tone for a brilliant GB performance.
Freeman, Williams and Conroy all scored in the opening 90 seconds of the games as they would all go onto have a big influence on the game. Freeman ended the game with six points and game-leading figures of 10 rebounds and 10 assists, while Williams led the points scoring and also recorded eight rebounds and six assists.
GB worked hard to press Australia and limited them to six points in the opening quarter, while in their offence GB’s ball movement was superb, scoring 16 points within the first seven minutes of play and ending the first quarter with a streak of eight unanswered points to hold a 14-point lead after the opening quarter.
GB continued to dominate the play in the second quarter, extending their advantage to 22 points at the halfway stage. Williams added six points to her tally in quarter two, while co-captain and assistant coach Maddie Thompson made an instant impact off the bench scoring six points in a three-minute spell.
It was a day when GB’s positive play was rewarded with a 55 per cent conversion rate across the game and quarter three was their biggest scoring quarter, scoring 23 points to Australia’s 12. Charlotte Moore got GB’s points scoring underway at the start of the second-half as Williams and Freeman were once again dominating the play and assists.
Amy Conroy had her best scoring game of the Paralympics so far with 15 points, including seven points in quick succession in the third quarter, as GB extended their lead to 33 points by the time the third quarter ended.
The fourth quarter was the lowest scoring quarter of the game but saw GB in control with Robyn Love scoring her first points of the game along with Lucy Robinson, who scored her first Paralympic Games points with four.
Thirty-seven points was the winning margin for ParalympicsGB as they beat Australia at the Paralympics Games for the first time to confirm their place in Tuesday’s quarter-finals.