Manama got off to a fine start in the Bahrain Basketball Association Cup outplaying Bahrain Club 100-75 in a Group B game at Zain Arena in Um Al Hassam last night.
Christopher McKnight and Sadiq Shukralla scored 23 points each to lead the winners with McKnight making brief appearances after being taken off midway during the second quarter. Both McKnight and Shukralla sunk two three-pointers each.
Manama made a brisk start, beginning with a three-pointer by Mohamed Hussain. Bahrain Club tried to catch up, and a three-pointer by Fadhel Abbas took them to 13-16, the three-point deficit being the closest they ever came in the game.
Manama began to race ahead and a three-pointer by McKnight gave them an 11-point lead at the end of the first quarter (27-16).
McKnight had scored 16 points when coach Pedro Monteiro withdrew him five minutes into the second quarter.
Coach Monteiro called back some other seniors as well, using them sparingly therafter, and gave the team’s younger players an opportunity to display their skills.
The changes, however, did not affect Manama’s pace as they extended their lead by 21 points at half-time (53-32).
McKnight returned after the interval and played for a brief period in the third quarter, scoring seven more points before his retreat.
Manama’s scoring spree continued and they managed to maintain a lead of almost 30 points during most periods of the second half as Bahrain Club struggled to tackle the swelling deficit.
At 98-75, Abbas Bahram shot a couple of free throws to take Manama’s score to three digits.
Hussain Lulu with 22 points and Jalal Akbar with 21 were the major scorers for Bahrain Club.
The first game of the evening was more exciting with Nuwaidrat holding off Al Ettihad 92-82 after an absorbing second-half.
The 10-point lead Nuwaidrat secured in the first half (47-37) proved invaluable as both teams scored 45 points each after the interval.
Mohamed Batti led the winners with 24 points and he was supported by Hasan Madan with 17 and Ebrahim Albasri with 14.
For Ettihad, Ammar Mohammed Shabaan scored 21 points while Fadhel Abdulelah contributed 16. Hassan Fahad (15) and Ali Ghadeer (14) were the other major scorers for Ettihad in the Group A encounter.
Sitra vs Muharraq (5.30pm)
Isa Town vs Al Hala (7.15pm)