Basketball: Sharks look forward to 2014

Zach Gachette was praised by coach Atiba Lyons. Pic: Dean Woolley.
Zach Gachette was praised by coach Atiba Lyons. Pic: Dean Woolley.
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The Sharks will begin 2014 in excellent shape, according to coach Atiba Lyons.

Victory in their final match on Friday night against London Lions was the perfect boost to Sheffield who find themselves just two points behind leading pair Worcester Wolves and Leicester Riders.

Sharks had been in stuttering form before turning on the style against London, much to Lyons’ delight.

He said: “I think the way we ended year was a wake up call.

“We had such a good start but the team underestimated how much other teams would improve after that first month.

“Now that they see teams, even like Birmingham and Surrey who are knocking on the door for wins now. Everyone is getting better and stronger.

“We’ve refocused and understand that we have to get better.”

Sharks have had strong performances from star players Mike Tuck, BJ Holmes and Jeremie Simmons all season.

Most pleasing has been the development of the likes of Colin Sing, Zach Gachette and George Brownell, who have given Lyons valuable contributions from the bench.

Gachette, aged 23, received praise from his coach after the London match.

Lyons said: “Zach is one of those players who has a lot of energy. He gives 100 per cent so it’s good to have that coming off the bench.

“He did a good job - he got a loose ball diving on the floor and was talking on defence.

“He did the things that I keep pestering him about. It’s always good to inject him into the line up.”

* Sharks juniors Marko Backovic and Matteo Murriero have been part of the England Under 17 squad taking part in the Haris Memorial Tournament in Manchester at the weekend.

The England Under 18 squad won the tournament.