Basketball: Stable Sharks begin building for season

Sharks captain Mike Tuck. Pic: Dean Woolley.
Sharks captain Mike Tuck. Pic: Dean Woolley.
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Stability is the key word for Sheffield Sharks as they begin to put together their squad for the new season.

Sharks were the nearly men of the British Basketball League during the 2013/14 campaign as they finished second in the league and reached the semi-finals of the Cup, Trophy and Play-offs. However, despite missing out on silverware, coach Atiba Lyons’ side established itself as a threat in the league - the competition that matters most to the club.

Management has started to build around the core of last year’s squad with captain Mike Tuck returning for the second of his two-year deal. He is expected to be joined by Olu Babalola who is close to signing a new one-year contract. It will be Babalola’s fifth full season with the club with the 6’6” Londoner providing experience and quality in the small forward position.

Sharks are in talks with several other members of last year’s team including point guard BJ Holmes.

The return, or not, of Holmes will be critical to what kind of overseas signings the Sharks need to complement their British-based players.

Sheffield’s season begins on Friday September 26 with a home match against Durham Wildcats at the EIS.

Leeds Carnegie and Bristol Flyers have joined the BBL with Birmingham Knights dropping out. The first Yorkshire derby against Leeds will be in West Yorkshire on Friday, December 5 with the other league fixtures being January 2 in Sheffield and January 30 in Leeds.