sheffield Sharks will be without player-coach Atiba Lyons for the BBL Trophy second leg at Newcastle Eagles after he received a mandatory one-match ban for being ejected from the first leg last Friday.
But he says his team will fight hard in the return match even though he’ll have to watch from the stands.
He said: “We’re approaching it like any other game.
“We’ll have a shortened roster but we still have enough quality to be competitive.”
It’s a tough road weekend for the Sharks. After the trip to the north-east they face the long journey to Devon to take on the title-chasing Plymouth Raiders in the BBL Championship.
Lyons said the run of fixtures, which has included three matches with league leaders Newcastle and games against the teams immediately below them in the league - Worcester, Leicester and Plymouth - hadn’t been particularly kind.
He said: “You never can tell at the start of the season who will be strong. Newcastle will be, but after that you have to wait and see.
“Our schedule has been tough but we’re battling through it. We’re still in a good position to make a push (for the play-offs).”
Veteran players Nate Reinking and Adrian Anderson will split coaching duties during the Eagles match.
Reinking’s knee injury may only keep him out for three weeks, although it is highly unlikely he will return before the end of the month.