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Basketball: Newcastle on their guard

Craig Lynch, the Newcastle Eagles coach, has warned his players to ignore the two defeats which rocked London Towers' Budweiser League season at the weekend when they line up against them at Wembley tonight for the first leg of their Uni-ball League Trophy semi-final. "We have to concentrate on our job and forget what's happening around us," Lynch said.

Following Saturday's 88-82 capitulation at Derby Storm and the astonishing 79-78 home defeat against the bottom club Watford Royals, only four points separate the top five clubs and Towers have played up to three more games than their rivals.

Lynch said: "Towers are there to be shot at and they just have to respond, like the rest of us. They're a good team, and we won't be fooled by those results."

Newcastle are on a 13-game unbeaten run and the sequence includes two league victories over Towers at Wembley, but Lynch said: "That's history.''