THE difference between top and bottom in the British Basketball League was there for all to see tonight as leaders Newcastle thrashed the bottom-placed Mersey Tigers.

Fab Flournoy's men were in irresistible form at the Metro Arena, scoring 121 points to Mersey's 58, with Dominican forward Darius Defoe their most prolific player with 24.

Elsewhere, Durham's length-of-the-country trek to Plymouth bore some fruit as they won 98-81, with Brad Guinane (32 points) excelling.

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Surrey were also winners on the road, making the shorter journey to Worcester, where Samuel Cricelli had a 22-point haul in a 97-91 success after overtime.

In the trophy, Sheffield saw off Glasgow 84-81, with BJ Holmes scoring 25 points despite an injury scare earlier in the week.