Basketball: Myers in moment of magic

Manchester Giants 85 Sheffield Sharks 87

BRINGING THE league championship down to their last game of the season was not enough for the Sharks and the Giants. Terrell Myers took it to the very last second yesterday, slotting home an 18ft jump-shot to land Sheffield the title in front of 11,143 fans at the MEN Arena.

Myers sold the sweetest fake to two Manchester defenders before launching his shot and he was buried by team-mates, the coach, Chris Finch, and the bench players before the ball had barely swished through the net.

But the 25-year-old from New Haven, Connecticut, was on familiar territory. Last season his final-second shot won the League Trophy for Sheffield. This time he added the league title to the National Cup they won in January to repeat Sheffield's double of 1995.

"I said to Travis [Conlan] in the locker-room before the game, `Give me the ball and I'll win it.' If I get the ball I always believe I am going to hit the shot. I was as good as my word," Myers said.

Although the championship has been settled before in the final game, never in league history have the two prospective champions faced each other in their last fixture with the title still in the balance.

Sheffield should have clinched it last weekend but nerves at the free- throw line cost them an 84-81 defeat at struggling Chester Jets. That gave Manchester a second chance after their title hopes appeared to fade with the previous weekend's defeat against London Towers.

Finch, the first person to win the league as a player and a coach with the Sharks' in 1995, said: "We've come through a tough week but we brought it down to the last shot. It's ended up being a fantastic week."

But nerves stiffened the shooting fingers. Sheffield hit just two out of 12 three-point attempts in the first quarter as the teams struggled to score at even 30 per cent from open play.

When John White opened the scoring with a three for Manchester it proved to be the biggest lead of the first quarter, before Myers and Kevin St Kitts also swapped three-pointers to tie the first quarter at 17-17.

Incredibly, Giants never led again as the Sharks reverted to their slower game to exert a tenuous, but what proved to be unshakeable, control.

They led by eight and nine points in the third and as many as 10 in the fourth, but the Giants always hit back. Whenever big-name stars White or Tony Dorsey hit the spectacular shot, Sheffield's blue-collar workers, Todd Cauthorn, Iain McKinney and Michael Payne, responded.

Before his winning shot, Myers made a play to break the hearts of the majority of fans in the second biggest crowd to watch a basketball game in England. With the Sharks clinging to an 84-83 lead, he missed a three- point attempt but then raced back to block a shot by St Kitts.

Peter Scantlebury, choosing this game to become the first player to make 500 league appearances, scored one free throw to give Sheffield an 85- 83 lead before Dorsey tied the game from the line.

Then, from an inbounds ball with just three-and-a-half seconds left on the clock, Myers took the pass then made time stand still to give the title to Sheffield.

Suggested Topics
Sport
The giant banner displayed by Legia Warsaw supporters last night
football
News
i100(and it's got nothing to do with the Great British Bake Off)
News
news
Sport
footballPremiership preview: All the talking points ahead of this weekend's matches
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Angelina Jolie with her father Jon Voight
people
Arts and Entertainment
Tulisa as a judge on the X Factor in 2012
tvLouis Walsh confirms star's return
Life and Style
fashionClothes shop opens on Bill Clinton Boulevard in Pristina
Voices
The Ukip leader has consistently refused to be drawn on where he would mount an attempt to secure a parliamentary seat
voicesNigel Farage: Those who predicted we would lose momentum heading into the 2015 election are going to have to think again
Arts and Entertainment
Cara Delevingne made her acting debut in Anna Karenina in 2012
film Cara Delevingne 'in talks' to star in Zoolander sequel
News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Project Manager - Pensions

£32000 - £38000 Per Annum Bonus, Life Insurance + Other Benefits: Clearwater P...

KYC Analyst, Birmingham - £200-£250 p/d

£200 - £250 per day + competitive: Orgtel: KYC Analyst, Key Banking Client, Bi...

Test Manager - Banking - Yorkshire - £450 per day

£400 - £500 per day: Orgtel: Test Manager - Banking - West Yorkshire - £400-£5...

IT Support - Hampshire - £24,000

£19000 - £24000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: The Ashdown Group have be...

Day In a Page

Ukraine crisis: The phoney war is over as Russian troops and armour pour across the border

The phoney war is over

Russian troops and armour pour into Ukraine
Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

The world’s entire food system is under attack - and Britain is most at risk, according to a new study
Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Seoul's plastic surgery industry is booming thanks to the popularity of the K-Pop look
From Mozart to Orson Welles: Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

After the death of Sandy Wilson, 90, who wrote his only hit musical in his twenties, John Walsh wonders what it's like to peak too soon and go on to live a life more ordinary
Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Fears are mounting that Vladimir Putin has instructed hackers to target banks like JP Morgan
Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years

Salomé: A head for seduction

Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years. Now audiences can meet the Biblical femme fatale in two new stage and screen projects
From Bram Stoker to Stanley Kubrick, the British Library's latest exhibition celebrates all things Gothic

British Library celebrates all things Gothic

Forthcoming exhibition Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination will be the UK's largest ever celebration of Gothic literature
The Hard Rock Café's owners are embroiled in a bitter legal dispute - but is the restaurant chain worth fighting for?

Is the Hard Rock Café worth fighting for?

The restaurant chain's owners are currently embroiled in a bitter legal dispute
Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival

In search of Caribbean soul food

Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival
11 best face powders

11 best face powders

Sweep away shiny skin with our pick of the best pressed and loose powder bases
England vs Norway: Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Lack of Englishmen at leading Premier League clubs leaves manager hamstrung
Angel Di Maria and Cristiano Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

Di Maria and Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

They both inherited the iconic shirt at Old Trafford, but the £59.7m new boy is joining a club in a very different state
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone