Basketball: Gordon faces trial by video

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BASKETBALL is set for its first trial by video following Worthing Bears' decision to send to the English Basket Ball Association a recording of an incident from their recent Carlsberg League First Division game against Guildford Kings.

Worthing's player-coach, Alan Cunningham, needed four stitches in his lip after allegedly being elbowed by the Kings' England international Trevor Gordon just before half time. Cunningham, a team- mate of Gordon at Guildford last season, played no further part in the game, and the incident was not seen by either game official.

Colin Smith, a Worthing director, said: 'A lot of people saw the incident and were incensed by it. One of our regular supporters, a lady, was trying out a new camcorder at the game, filmed the incident and gave me the copy.'

Smith, who did not witness the incident 'live', added: 'I showed the recording to someone else to make sure I wasn't seeing what I wanted to see, and then decided to send it to the EBBA. They have told me it will be referred to their disciplinary committee.

'I expect them to make a judgement. This type of video evidence has been used in football and in other sports. Gordon knows what he did. It's over to the EBBA now, so let them do what they will.'

Smith denies that Worthing are presenting the video as a 'sour grapes' reaction to losing to Guildford in last weekend's National Cup final. Mike Smith, the administrator of the Basketball League Limited, which runs the First Division of the League, was told before the final that Worthing would be presenting the video.

Guildford's hopes of finishing in the top three, behind Worthing and Thames Valley, slipped on Thursday night when they lost 101- 100 at third-placed London Towers, where Andrew Bailey scored the winner six seconds from the end of overtime.