Basketball: Bridge expects a tough raid on Plymouth’s home court

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SHEFFIELD Sharks will be aiming to get back to where they started from tomorrow night at Plymouth Raiders.

Five wins in a row in the BBL Championship has lifted their tally to 14 for the season against 15 defeats.

And with a play-off berth already wrapped up the Sharks still have an outside chance of reaching sixth position and with it the certainty of avoiding champions-elect Leicester Riders and last year’s winners Newcastle Eagles in the first round of the post-season.

Sheffield beat the Raiders 82-67 on March 20 at the English Institute of Sport but Sharks’ forward Andrew Bridge knows a repeat victory will be a tougher proposition on the road: “We played pretty well, we didn’t come out with all guns blazing but we started to make shots at the end of the first quarter and into the second period.

“We got a bit of a lead and we managed to maintain it without doing anything too spectacular.

“We were consistent and solid. They had injuries which didn’t help them, and we did what was needed.

“They play a lot better at home, and they’ll look to even the score a bit. You have to assume their injury problems will clear up in the ten days between the two games.

“It’s important for them to get into the play-offs healthy, but they’ll want a high seed as well which is tough for Gavin (Gavin Love, the Plymouth coach) to decide whether to player or rest them. I’m expecting a tough game.”

Sheffield will return overnight and have to be ready to take on Newcastle on Sunday afternoon at the EIS. The way the positions stand at the moment there’s a chance Sharks and Eagles will meet four times in a fortnight: Sunday and Tuesday in the league and two play-off games.

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