Basketball: Riders rally despite financial worries
Monday 05 February 2007
Within a week of the British Basketball League announcing all 10 of their clubs have signed to play in the competition next season, Leicester Riders fans left the 78-76 win over Scottish Rocks on Saturday night fearing their team may not have enough funds to last another seven days.
A threadbare Riders squad of just seven players fought to a stirring victory over the Rocks, but at half-time supporters were told by club official Mike Steptoe that the franchise-holding company had gone into liquidation.
The news made for an emotional second half at the John Sandford sports centre on the campus of Leicester's De Montfort University. A 17-3 run, including three three-pointers from Terrance McGee gave the Riders a 75-68 lead but the victory was secured only six seconds from time by a single free-throw from Adam Williams.
The BBL chief executive Paul Blake moved quickly to quieten the fans' fears. Blake said: "There is a solution to the issue and I am more than confident that Riders will see out the season." The franchise reverts to the previous owner Kevin Routledge, who will now join his son Dan, a former BBL employee, Steptoe and Steve White in trying to raise funds to see out the season.
Sheffield Sharks had simpler matters on their minds winning the championship and they won 98-86 at Guildford Heat on Saturday night to briefly leapfrog the Surrey club and take over first place in the table. Blake Shelton led the Sheffield scoring with 29 points as they capitalised on Guildford losing the impressive Chad McKnight to a first-half injury.
However, Guildford recovered with an 89-82 victory at London United last night, scoring the last nine points of the game as Brian Dux led the way with 31 points, although London's Great Britain international Tarick Johnson led all scorers with 39.
Guildford are level on 16 wins with Sheffield and Newcastle Eagles, 91-67 winners over Worcester Wolves on Saturday, but the Heat have two games in hand over their rivals.
Latest in Sport
What time does Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao begin and what channel is it on?
Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao live: Mayweather puts on defensive masterclass to win by unanimous decision
What time does Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao begin on Sky Sports Box Office?
Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao: What time does the fight start and what channel is it on?
Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao: Only 132 pubs in the United Kingdom will show the fight - so where can you watch it?
- 1 Which country would be hardest to invade?
- 3 The man who filmed the Freddie Gray video has been arrested at gunpoint
- 4 How the language you speak changes your view of the world
Over 50,000 families shipped out of London boroughs in the past three years due to welfare cuts and soaring rents
EU asylum policy is 'a direct threat to our civilisation', says Nigel Farage
Indonesia executions live: 'Hysterical' families heard prisoners being shot dead by firing squad
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: SNP and its activists 'openly racist' towards the English, Farage says
EU exit would hit UK economy much harder than neighbouring countries, study finds
£28000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Senior Digital Marketing Cons...
£16640 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An Assistant Stores Keeper is r...
£16000 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an excellent opportunit...
£17000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Developer required to join a bu...