Edinburgh Kings and Kool Kats face two of their biggest league tests of the basketball season this weekend in away fixtures.
Kings return to the Lagoon Centre in Paisley tomorrow at 3.20pm to seek revenge on St Mirren, who dumped them out of the Scottish Cup there just before Christmas, while Kats travel to Cumbernauld on Sunday to play the Glasgow Rocks in a must-win game at St Maurice’s High School (2.20pm).
“It’s a massive game if we are to finish runners-up in the league and gain second seed spot in the play-offs,” said Kings’ experienced Scottish international Paddy Campbell.
“Games against Saints are always tough and physical, so we’ll have to be up for the fight and focus on our rebounding and transition – hopefully we’ll get the win.”
Though they lost their last encounter in the cup, Kings will take heart from the fact Saints lost to Glasgow University last weekend, while the Capital side, who will be without Greek guard Menelaus Kokolios, were comfortable winners over Boroughmuir Blaze in their derby at Portobello last Saturday.
Kats, who had two losses early on, gave their best display of the season at Portobello against Tayside Musketeers to win 102-44, but are well aware they have a tougher task ahead on Sunday when they need to inflict a first defeat on the league leaders.
Assistant coach Brian Findlay has picked out the big threat in the Rocks ranks as their new player French student Mathilde Brunel: “She’s strong and aggressive.”
But head coach Ben Gunn insists: “We just need to take the things we did well from last week and the things we’ve worked on in practice and put them into the game.”
Last season’s women’s champions Polonia Phoenix are still seeking their first win after going down narrowly 60-58 to Falkirk Fury at the Crags last weekend.
They face Tayside there on Sunday (3.20pm) hoping to break their duck.