Friday 11th January 2019 – DBL Sharks Sheffield v Worcester Wolves
Saturday 12th January 2019 – London City Royals v DBL Sharks Sheffield
The relentless pace of BBL basketball continues into 2019 as the Sharks line up another big double header weekend. Bottom side Worcester Wolves visit the EIS on Friday with praise still ringing in their ears from a battling performance against reigning champions Leicester Riders. The following night the Sharks make the journey down to the Crystal Palace National Sports Centre to take on the assembled British talent of BBL newcomers the London City Royals.
What to expect – Worcester Wolves
The Wolves may sit at the foot of the BBL table with a 1-13 record but they impressed in their last game against Leicester Riders, despite eventually falling by 94-86. Coming up big in that game were Lester Prosper (30 points 16 rebounds) and Robert Crawford (32 points 4 rebounds) as only a low scoring final quarter prevented Worcester from giving the reigning champs a scare. It was all the more impressive given that the Wolves were missing Deshawn Freeman and Filip Kramer through injury. Worcester also boast England international Adam Thoseby amongst their ranks, who is putting up a respectable 12 points per game with 3.3 rebounds and 2.5 assists. Respected BBL pundits believe the Wolves will turn the corner soon and the Sharks need to be wary of this ‘hungry’ side.
What to expect – London City Royals
The Royals are 7-6 for the season in sixth place with a roster that has pulled together the cream of British talent. The fulcrum of the team is Matthew Bryan-Amaning, who currently averages 18.7 points per game with 7.2 rebounds. The Royals bided their time on the fitness of Ashley Hamilton, who has rewarded with 14.3 points per game and 5.3 rebounds. Add in well-known BBL high-performers such as Orlan Jackman, Elvisi Dusha, Will Neighbour and former-Shark Sam Toluwase and it is clear to see that the Royals could yet push on to loftier things in their inaugural campaign. They have also yet to be beaten at home; Manchester being the latest side to go down at Crystal Palace by 97-90 – Jules Dang Akodo dishing out 7 assists as Will Neighbour (22 points) brought the win.
Atiba Lyons has demanded greater production from the bench and his younger players as the side look to arrest a two game losing streak. Failure to add a single point from the bench was one key factor in last week’s 69-90 loss at home to Leicester Riders. That said, there was a marked contrast in the depth of the two sides and Lyons and his staff will have been working overtime to ensure that the Sharks can replicate the style of basketball that carried them so successfully to an eight game winning streak earlier on in the year. It is not the first time that the organisation have stepped in to arrest a decline in performance and they will be just as determined to return to winning ways.
Last time out
Worcester Wolves (Whelan 21, Kramer 19, Thoseby 9) 67 DBL Sharks Sheffield (Williams 22, Alexander 18, Marsden 16) 89
London City Royals – first ever game
Everyone likes a January sale, right? Our 3 for 2 offer still applies and you can see the next three games of thrilling Sharks basketball for the price of just two by heading to https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/o/sheffield-sharks-17652611314. We have a massive game against the Wolves and Atiba and the guys need you there to cheer them on! All Sharks aren’t we!!
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