Blaze hope to enjoy derby improvement

Simon Flockhart
Simon Flockhart
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After a long festive break, Scottish League basketball resumes tonight with a Capital derby between Edinburgh Kings and Boroughmuir Blaze at Portobello High (8pm).

Undaunted by a heavy defeat in their last encounter, Blaze are determined to use the occasion as a yardstick. “It will be great to measure our improvement from the last time the two teams met,” said Blaze coach Simon Turner. “Kings’ defence was outstanding that day so we have to meet the challenge and we’re looking forward to it.”

Kings centre Simon Flockhart is aware of the threat posed by Blaze if Kings, currently third in the table with three defeats and Blaze fourth on four, are complacent. “With Fury in top spot and looking good for the title we need to focus on being consistent and having a strong second half of the season leading into the play-offs,” he said. “Blaze will want to go away with a win and the local bragging rights but if we play smart at both ends of the floor we can start 2014 with a win.”

Kings coach Doug Reilly reports that he should have a full squad available, though there is a slight worry about injury niggles to Craig Reilly and Mike Murray.

Falkirk Fury, meanwhile, are hosts to the Glasgow Rocks Scottish League side at the Mariner Sports Centre tonight (8pm) and have been having a fascinating tug-of-war for the services of Scotland guard Jonny Bunyan, who normally plays for both Fury and the Rocks pro team.

For the first time this season, there is a fixture clash as the Rocks are away to winless Birmingham Knights tonight (7.30pm) and they want Bunyan as their standby point guard to spell EJ Harrison.

There is a full day of games at Portobello High tomorrow, with Edinburgh Kool Kats at home to Tayside Musketeers in the Scottish Women’s League at 3pm following cadette (11am) and junior (1pm) women’s games between the two.

Kings and Blaze resume battle in the cadet men’s league at 5pm and junior at 7pm.

Polonia Phoenix women host Falkirk Fury at the Crags SC (2pm).