Season Preview

West Brom Basketball Club have been handed the league opening fixture for the upcoming West Midlands Premier Division – as they travel to MLC on September 23.

The Black Country side will take on their first opponents of the new season after a summer of change at the club, seeing a host of new faces sign up for the campaign.

Those new arrivals will help balance against the loss of forward Michal Banczer, who has departed the club ahead of their pre-season preparations.

Meanwhile, a new head coach has been placed in charge of the men’s team, as they look to build on their first campaign in the top flight, which eventually saw them exit the play-offs to eventual champions Birmingham Mets.

Following the league opener, West Brom will host their first game at their new home at West Brom Leisure Centre against old foes Lordswood, before games against the Mets and promoted side Broadway Casino take precedent.

Director of Basketball Liam Sheridan admitted it’s a tough opening schedule, but believes his new-look side can perform and improve on their showings last season.

“The Premier division this season looks incredibly tough, we’ll have to bring our A-game for every fixture.” he said.

“We have a tough start with the likes of Birmingham Mets and Lordswood in two of our first three games, but we’ve had a great pre-season so far and should be prepared to compete with the best of the best this year.

“I think we’ll get a feel for our goals once we have a couple of games under our belt, but with the strength and depth we have we should do well.”

The departure of Banczer would be considered quite a blow for the side, but the arrival of new Men’s head coach Tim Rudge, along with numerous summer signings, has got the team excited about their prospects.

The side have also retained the services of a number of key players from the previous campaign too, with a majority of the side’s stars all signing up for another season.

Sheridan believes that their mixture of experience along with the talented new acquisitions should make for an exciting prospect.

“Despite losing one of our biggest offensive threats in Michal, I think we’ve really strengthened well ahead of what we hope will be a strong campaign.” he said.

“We have really added some key players, and I’m obviously extremely pleased to see plenty of the other guys from last season returning too.”

“I’m delighted to have Tim involved. He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience having played and coached at a professional level.

“I’m eager to learn new things from working alongside him from a coaching standpoint and I can’t wait to see the players show his teachings on-court.”

West Brom will take on two pre-season opponents this week, first facing Rugeley Raptors on Thursday September 13, before hosting Frankley Falcons a day later. Come and see the action at George Salter Academy, tip off at 8pm.

The Black Country side secured their first pre-season win last Sunday, in which they bettered Spartans by just three points 68-65 in a frenetic finish, thanks to a solid team performance capped off with a Luke Hatfield three on the final buzzer!

CLICK HERE to see highlights of the action v Spartans.

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