The Oklahoma City Thunder raced out to a big first-quarter lead and then withstood a fierce Miami Heat comeback to hold a 49-46 lead at halftime of Tuesday's Game Four in the NBA Finals.

The Thunder, who suffered from cold starts in the first three games of the series, surged to a 33-19 lead at the end of the first quarter, scoring from inside and out and taking advantage of some poor shooting by the Heat.

But Miami ran off the first 13 points of the second quarter to get right back into the game at 33-32 less than four minutes into the period and waged a tug of war battle right up to intermission.

Russell Westbrook, on 9-of-15 shooting, led all scorers with 18 points, while Kevin Durant added 12 points for Oklahoma City.

LeBron James and Dwyane Wade each had 10 points to pace the Heat, who lead the best-of-seven championship series 2-1.

(Reporting by Larry Fine; Editing by Greg Stutchbury)