Benecos BBL Playoffs Semi-Finals

Thursday 9th May 2019 – DBL Sharks Sheffield v London City Royals

Saturday 11th May 2019 – London City Royals v DBL Sharks Sheffield

The DBL Sharks Sheffield bring their time at the EIS to an end in the best way possible with the first leg of their aggregate score Playoff semi-final against London City Royals this Thursday. The side are just eighty minutes away from a big season finale at the O2 Arena in the capital following their stunning quarter final upset win over third seeds, Newcastle Eagles.

What to expect

The Royals have already secured the BBL Trophy in their inaugural season in the league. Their success has been built on securing the best British talent around and a tilt at the Playoff Final would be the icing on the cake in a stellar first campaign. They secured their semi-final berth with a 140-132 aggregate win over Glasgow Rocks; winning the home leg by 75-60 but dipping north of the border by 65-72. Leading the way for the league’s latest franchise is Matthew Bryan-Amaning, bringing all the experience he has gathered from playing out in Europe’s top leagues, with 17 ppg and 6.6 rpg. Ashley Hamilton saw GB action this season given his rich vein of form for the Royals with 14.1 ppg and 5.8 rpg. Import Wes Washpun (16.4 ppg, 5.1 rpg, 4.1 apg) didn’t figure in either of the Rocks games but the Royals also boast Orlan Jackman, Will Neighbour, Elvisi Dusha and former Shark Sam Toluwase amongst the Brit talent available to them. The two sides have recent history – the Royals taking that thrilling overtime encounter at the EIS on April 19th by 88-93, led by Ed Lucas (18), Ashley Hamilton (17) and Wes Washpun (16) despite a massive 38 points from the Sharks’ Chris Alexander. Mercurial, entertaining and with talent in abundance, London City bring everything you’d expect from a side at this stage of the competition. Two unmissable games await!

Shark Watch

Spirit, heart, pluck, call it what you will but the two legged quarter final win over third seeds Newcastle Eagles showed that the Sharks have it in abundance. Even being down by eight points with a minute of the first encounter still to play, their fighting abilities were displayed by Mackey McKnight’s late three pointer. Then, by wiping out the five point deficit immediately at the beginning of the second game, they put their cards on the table. What followed was a display of great skill and freedom as the Eagles were blown away, even despite their late fightback. Chris Alexander was at his irresistible best with 51 points across the weekend and Dirk Williams recovered from a quieter night on Saturday to post a valuable 23 on Sunday. Rob Marsden put up a further two ‘trojan’ displays and Mathew Martin went under the radar once again while filling up his statline in his now customary efficient manner. And what about Mackey McKnight’s near triple double on Sunday? Or Drago Brcina’s timely interventions in both encounters? This team has the ability to get the job done. Keep playing with belief!

Last time out

DBL Sharks Sheffield (Alexander 38 McKnight 17 Williams 15) 88 London City Royals (Lucas 18 Hamilton 17 Washpun 16) 93

Fans Corner

It’s our final game ever at the EIS! And it’s a huge benecos BBL Playoff Semi Final! You cannot afford to miss this one! Remember how thrilling the last game in the Tank was against London City Royals? Well this one is going to be equally as good – and there’s a lot more riding on it this time around. Check our social media for details of how you can secure your ticket to the biggest game in town this Thursday evening. Ticket link is below! We’ll publish details of any broadcast information during this week so you can follow every minute of the action. Come and say farewell to the EIS before our move to Ponds Forge and more importantly, cheer Atiba and the guys on towards the final at the O2 Arena – together we can do this! It’s time to #FearTheFin!

Next Home Game

London City Royals at DBL Sharks Sheffield, Thursday 9th May 2019, EIS Sheffield, benecos BBL Playoff Semi Final 1st Leg, 7.30pm Tip Off

Click the image below to book tickets:

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Andy Chubb