Dunk-off should have decided win: Hurdle

BASKETBALL

Acrobatic Wollongong import Lance Hurdle believes he was robbed of the dunk title at the recent NBL All-Star festivities in Adelaide.

As the Hawks prepared for tonight's home clash with Melbourne, Hurdle took time out to speak about his narrow loss to Tigers guard Bennie Lewis on a controversial countback.

Both players received perfect scores from judges in the final of the dunk contest, but Lewis was declared the winner by a point on the basis of scores from preliminary rounds.

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A thoughtful type, Hurdle isn't crying foul or making excuses.

But he had never lost a dunk contest previously and said officials should have determined the winner with a dunk-off.

"I think it should've at least went one more round [rather than] end it right there. One more round would've sorted it out the right way," the 188cm guard said.

"His last dunk wasn't better than the one I threw out from the stands. If you were going to end it on that, I should've won. There should've been one more round but ... it was a good show for the fans. I had a lot of fun and enjoyed myself."

Hurdle said he had no hard feelings for Lewis or the judges.

"It would've been nice to win, but I just wanted to put on a good show and try not to pay too much attention to the result," he said.

"[Lewis] didn't say [Hurdle deserved to win]. He took the win gladly. He's a good dude. I'm not the type of person to come out and complain. I had fun and if the fans got some enjoyment and entertainment from it, that's all that matters.

"But hey, we play them [tonight] and hopefully we can get some get-back."

Hurdle scored nine points in the Hawks' 74-66 defeat of Melbourne in round eight.

Wollongong were down in the fourth quarter before out-playing the home side down the stretch.

"It's going to be a very tough game," Hurdle said.

"They're very talented across the board. They've beaten some good teams - they beat Adelaide by 30. This team is scary so we have to come out ready to play."

The Hawks will be playing their first game since losing to Sydney in overtime on December 15.

"It's easy to get back to work, but the break and all the days off takes us out of our rhythm a little bit," Hurdle said.

"This is what we do so we have to be ready to go. But just the flow and the rhythm might take a little time, and that's just how it goes sometimes for any team.

"Hopefully we can snap out of it quick."

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