Cheshire Phoenix coach Matt Lloyd saw his side's play-off hopes suffer a major blow at the weekend, starting with defeat at London Lions.

An evenly matched first half saw the Lions hold a slender one-point lead over the visitors at Crystal Palace 42-41 thanks largely to the scoring of Chez Marks (23) which had the Phoenix up 31-23 at one stage in the second period. 

But having gathered some momentum going into the break in the third quarter the Lions took a firm grip of proceedings, stretching out a 13 point lead by the end of the period thanks to the scoring of Tayo Ogedengbe (20) and Adrian Sturt (20) and in the final quarter they opened up a 20-point lead 81-61 before a late rally from the Phoenix closed the gap to 11.

The defeat, which gave the Lions the head-to-head advantage over the Phoenix, proved even more costly as Manchester Giants beat Surrey Heat to draw level on points with Lloyd's side before, on Sunday, Durham Wildcats also drew level on points with the now 10th-placed Phoenix after beating the Lions.