Basketball: Tucker leaves Bullets and returns to America

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The Independent Online

Most Birmingham Bullets fans had their wish yesterday when the coach, Steve Tucker, left the British Basketball League's bottom club, though not under the circumstances even his severest critics would have wished.

The club's owner, Craig Bown, announced that Tucker had returned to America on "indefinite leave of absence to deal with a family emergency", but cast no further light on the specific reason.

Tucker joined Bullets last summer for his second spell in charge of team affairs but failed to guide Bullets into the play-off quarter-finals. Bullets have won just a single BBL game in 27 starts and unless they win six of the last nine the former play-off champions will have compiled the worst record in the club's history.

Avoiding that ignominy falls on Tucker's young English assistant, Darran Ling, and his first assignment is Sunday's trip to Leicester Riders, one place above Bullets in the table and their only victims in 31 games in all competitions.