Cairns Taipans will take winning form into their next National Basketball League pre-season assignment.
The Taipans took ownership of the Ballarat Minerdome showcourt on Saturday night to square a two-game series with Melbourne United.
A 1400-strong sell-out crowd was highly vocal in its support of Melbourne, but United was unable to halt Cairns’ last quarter surge to take the honours 85-78.
Cairns now plays Illawarra Hawks in Cairns on Friday and Saturday before the NBL Australian Basketball Challenge in Brisbane on September 23-26.
The loss was not Melbourne’s only cause for concern.
United also lost Owen Odigie with an ankle injury – this after frontline player David Barlow was a late withdrawal from the game.
Basketball Ballarat chief executive officer Peter Eddy is hopeful that Ballarat’s show of support for the exhibition NBL game enhanced its campaign for funding to redevelop the Ballarat Sports and Events Centre
“We are delighted that, for the third year running, our NBL game has attracted a sell out crowd.”
He said without National Stronger Regions funding for the development, which would have a 3000-seat capacity, this might be the last time Ballarat attracts NBL teams to Ballarat.
Melbourne has played in each of the three games.
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