Basketball: Tigers burning bright

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The Independent Online
The former England international Paul James is wondering how much longer his Thames Valley Tigers team can continue surprise the opposition. Tigers are second in the Budweiser League to London Towers.

"It suits me fine," says the Leicester-born James, who played for the local Riders and then Thames Valley and made 22 appearances for England. James took over as coach for Mick Bett in the summer after Tigers failed to reach the playoffs for the first time in 10 years.

"I keep reading we're a surprise team but it's no surprise to me. Let's hope we can keep surprising the opposition. We had good teams here in the past and it's just been a matter of discipline and getting guys to play to their strengths."

Tigers' American Tony Holley won the League's Player of the Month award for September and James was named Coach of the Month for October.

Their revival was underlined before Sunday's 100-86 win over Sheffield Sharks, when the start had to be delayed because fans were still queueing outside at their Bracknell venue. "It's been a while since that happened," James said.

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