Dave Ryan reports…
As his side prepare to return to action with a visit from Westminster Warriors, Levett Essex Leopards’ coach Thomas Baker is ready for a key four months of action.
“2018 is going to be a big year for us, as we are currently a few games behind other teams in the schedule due to some weekends off and we will need to be ready for some tough double headers” he said. “There’s no better game to get us ready for being tough than a home tie against Westminster. It’s quite poetic that we started the season playing Westminster and we kick off 2018 playing Westminster.
“They will be ready for us that’s for sure, it was a highly competitive affair at their place and both sides have improved their rosters since then.
“Ending 2017 5-2 has kept us in contention but as I said we will need to be ready for a tough couple of months if we are to achieve our aim of returning back to Division One at the first time of asking.”
As Baker says, the Big Cats have played the fewest number of games in Division Two, and head into the New Year in fourth place.
Warriors – who have former Leopards Mike Martin, Tosin Oyelese, Justin Hitchman, Mantis Adomantis and Lawrence Brown on their roster – will arrive at Brentwood one place behind Leopards having split their first ten games.
After the two sides were relegated from Division One last season they met in their opening game in the second tier, and the Big Cats made a winning start as they finished the game strongly to win 83-77 with Korey Callum and Dougie Bennett each scoring 19 points.
The London side have adjusted well to life in the second tier, and along with their five league wins they have reached the semi-final of the Patrons Cup.
The Big Cats will again be running their pre-game coaching session with the players teaching youngsters how to play the game. Further details on www.leopardsbasketball.co.uk or call 07828 470015.