Basketball: Durham a mystery to Ed Uni

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Edinburgh UNIVERSITY women’s basketball coach, Cameron Tucker, admits that he knows very little yet about Durham University, his team’s opponents in their opening British Universities Northern Premier Division at the Pleasance on Wednesday.

So far he has been more concerned about getting his own team ready physically and tactically for whatever their North East opponents may throw at them.

But he and the Capital students could be in for a rude awakening as an unofficial spokesman from the area predicts: “Durham will be strong candidates for the BUCS title this year. They could have as many as seven American players in their side.”

That would be a tough baptism for Tucker, who was disappointed to find on arrival that one of last season’s stars, Claire Paxton, was about to make the reverse journey across the Atlantic and is now at Colorado Christian University in Lakewood, Denver.

But he is delighted with the commitment his team have shown since he took up his appointment as Edinburgh’s first professional Head of Performance Basketball.

Hannah Peacock, Hilary Wood and Beth Mackie look likely starters from last season’s successful side though Mackie had ankle surgery in the summer and may play limited minutes.

Ailie Gardener and Katy Brown are two more returning from last year when coach Jim Mitchell’s EU side won through play-offs to gain promotion after dominating the 
Scottish conference.