• Mon. Jun 17th, 2024

North East Connected

Hopping Across The North East From Hub To Hub

British_Basketball_League_(emblem)Expect more twists and turns in the title and Play-Off races this weekend with eight games split between tonight and Sunday in the BBL Championship.
Leicester Riders moved to the top of the BBL Championship in midweek and continue their hectic schedule with a trip to Worcester Wolves this evening, before hosting Plymouth University Raiders on Sunday.
The league leaders won both league meetings against Worcester earlier this season, and have beaten Plymouth 13 games in a row, but Riders forward Jamell Anderson is anticipating some strong challenges as his side look to maintain pole position in the title race.
“Of course it’s a good feeling [being top], but it goes hand in hand with a lot of effort and focus,” he declared.

“We know what it takes to be successful and we have to continue doing what it takes day in and day out.”

On their busy run-in, he added, “We have great coaching staff who are very approachable and understanding of us players.

“We will continue to communicate about any energy levels and make sure we are ready to perform every game.

“It’s coming up to the closing of the regular season, and as expected, lots of teams are ramping up their performances to ensure they get Play-Off spots and a good finishing position in the league table.

“Plymouth and Worcester both have talented guys, and we will have to be on top form as both games will be tough.”

Esh Group Eagles Newcastle return to action this weekend and they will be looking to take care of their own business as they host Bristol Flyers tonight before heading on the road to take on basement side Manchester Giants, on Sunday.

There’s a crunch game at the Emirates Arena on Sunday as fifth placed Glasgow Rocks welcome fourth placed Sheffield Sharks. The Rocks face Surrey Scorchers in Guildford tonight, while the Sharks head into Sunday’s encounter on the back of two home victories last week.

And, Sheffield’s captain Mike Tuck believes they were of great importance to boost his side as they hold on to a top-four spot.

“Those were great wins for us,” he insisted.

“We needed those to help us bounce back after a rough spell and at this point in the season, every win helps us with momentum and confidence so it’s important to keep stringing wins together.”

The series head-to-head is also on the line after both teams won on their opponents’ home court and Tuck says that the Sharks are looking to make up for their overtime defeat back in November.

“It’s a long trip up to Scotland, but I always enjoy going up and playing in Glasgow – they have an amazing facility and great fans,” added Tuck.

“The game will be great Play-Off preparation for us as they have a deep team with some weapons and the atmosphere gives the game a bit of an edge as well.

“The Rocks have been up an up and down team this season, but they are not a team we are taking lightly.

“The last time we saw them, at our place, they won it at the end so we are definitely out for revenge this game.”

Elsewhere, Leeds Force know that defeat at home to London Lions tonight would be a near-fatal blow to their Play-Off hopes, while Cheshire Phoenix could seal their spot with victory on Sunday as Surrey are their visitors.

By admin