Category: Game Preview

Rockets face final double header of 2019

Reading Rockets (8-3) will have one of their toughest weekend’s of the season coming up when they travel to the South coast on Saturday evening to take on second placed Worthing Thunder (9-2) in NBL Division One (7.30pm tip-off) before making the short journey to Oaklands the following day to face Essex and Herts Leopards in the National Cup quarter-finals (3.30pm tip-off).

Rockets got back to winning ways last weekend when they defeated Bradford Dragons 78-75 at the John Madejski Academy and are now in joint third position in the NBL Division One table alongside Thames Valley Cavaliers and Hemel Storm. This Saturday’s match-up against the Thunder will be the first encounter of the season between the two teams whilst Sunday’s cup clash against the Leopards will be the third time the two teams have met already this season. Rockets have won both encounters to date; a pre-season victory by 97 points to 74 followed by an away win in league play last month, recording an 81-67 success for Alan Keane’s men.

The Rockets Head Coach was pleased to see his team get back to winning ways last Sunday but Coach Keane knows this weekend is a big one for his group. The Irishman said,

“Although it’s another double header for us, we are excited to be playing in these type of games, especially a cup quarter final but before we put our minds to that game we face a tough Worthing opponent. They are a very guard orientated team who are putting up big numbers in the league so we will really need to bring to life the scouting report and be at our best defensively to stem the flow.”

“Sunday brings a different challenge in Essex who are an ever-improving team and were very unlucky not to beat Nottingham on the weekend losing the game in the last couple of minutes. The difference with this game is that it is a cup game, winner takes all, so we will need to be as prepared for this match-up but only after we have navigated the test against Worthing.”

“A great weekend to be a part of and hopefully we will have a near to fully fit roster.”

Rockets go into their final double header of 2019 with a few injury concerns, something they have been all to familiar with during the last four games. Spaniard Pau Mayor was missing again last weekend with a thigh injury and it is unknown if he will be able to return to action for the two upcoming games. David Chive missed last weekend’s victory over Bradford Dragons and will be out of action until the new year for personal reasons. American AJ Carr sat out all of last week’s practice with the flu but did return for last weekend’s victory and should be fully recovered in time for the Reading outfit’s two trips.

With three games to go of 2019, Rockets have a chance to reach the National Cup semi-finals as well as reclaiming second place in the NBL Division One table with three wins as Coach Keane’s group look to finish the year in style.

Follow the Rockets on social media; Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram – @rocketsreading or check out the club’s website – www.readingrockets.co.uk

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Rockets looking to bounce back after biggest defeat of the season

Reading Rockets (7-3) will be looking to bounce back from their heavy defeat to Derby Trailblazers (6-4) this weekend when they take on Bradford Dragons (4-6) at the John Madejski Academy on Sunday afternoon, 5pm tip-off. Rockets suffered a 77-102 loss at the hands of their visitors last weekend and slip to fourth place in the NBL Division One table after only their second league loss in nine games.

The Berkshire outfit will entertain the Dragons for the first time this term, a team they did the double over last season recording an 89-95 away victory whilst dominating the home affair 100-60. Bradford are on a good run in league play having won three out of the last four with their only loss in that period coming against Hemel Storm in a 94-88 overtime loss.

Rockets Head Coach Alan Keane was disappointed with last weekend’s performance and knows Bradford will provide a tough test for his team this Sunday but believes the group will be ready to respond. He said,

“Last weekend’s loss to Derby was probably the poorest performance of the season from us so far and it was disappointing to see, however we are not defining ourselves on one game and we all get back to practice this week to re-align and re-focus ahead of Sunday’s game against Bradford.”

“Bradford are a well established team in the division and Coach Mellor does a really good job with the groups he has and this year he has a good blend of youth and experience and are a match for anyone on any given day. They have a number of players who know the league really well and this helps them compete with the best teams.”

“Whilst we will respect what Bradford bring to the table on Sunday, I know the players will be wanting to give a response after last week as well as continuing on our journey of being the best we can in every moment.”

Rockets go into Sunday’s clash having had some recent injury and illness concerns. Spanish guard Pau Mayor did not recover in time to face Derby last weekend after sustaining a dead leg the previous week and it will be touch and go as to whether 23 year old will be fit in time for this Sunday. Captain Ed Potter was a doubt for Rockets’ ahead of last Sunday’s loss with a fractured hand, however the 24 year old forward did suit up for the Berkshire outfit and should be fit to play against Bradford. American AJ Carr played through a severe bout of flu last weekend but the Reading team are hopeful he will have fully recovered ahead of this week’s upcoming game.

Rockets are 7-3 through the first ten games of the regular season with a tough schedule to end 2019 with visits to Worthing Thunder, Essex and Herts Leopards (National Cup quarter-final) and Hemel Storm rounding of the year.

Follow the Rockets on social media; Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram – @rocketsreading or check out the club’s website – www.readingrockets.co.uk

Media@readingrockets.co.uk
Basketball Hotline 0118 926 3040
www.readingrockets.co.uk

Rockets looking to continue good form with the visit of Derby Trailblazers

Reading Rockets (7-2) will be looking to keep up their excellent form this weekend as they welcome Derby Trailblazers (5-4) to Reading on Sunday afternoon (5pm tip-off), finally returning to their regular home venue of Rivermead Leisure Complex. Rockets secured a pair of wins last weekend grinding out an 81-67 away win at basement outfit Essex and Herts Leopards (0-9) before advancing to the National Cup quarter-finals with the narrowest of victories in Nottingham, beating the Hoods 78-77 to make it nine wins out of ten in all competitions.

Rockets Head Coach Alan Keane was a happy man after last weekend’s double success but will be hoping his team recover in time for this Sunday’s clash against Derby when they entertain the East Midlands side back in front of their home crowd, something the Irishman is looking forward to. He said,

“Coming off a double header weekend away and three games on the bounce away from the Rivermead, it will be really exciting to get back to playing in front of our home fan base. Derby, another potential top four team in the league will bring different challenges. A team very well coached team who compete as tough as any team in the league. They are capable to score in a variety of ways but obviously Malcolm Smith will need a lot of attention from us. A tough run of league games coming our way and Derby presents as big as challenge as any.”

The Berkshire outfit go into Sunday’s match-up with a number of injury and illness concerns. British guard Ed Potter missed Sunday’s National Cup win against Nottingham with a suspected broken finger and the Reading team won’t know if he will be able to play this weekend until just before the game. Young British point guard David Chive missed both last weekend’s games through illness but the Rockets are hoping the 18 year old makes a full recovery before this weekend’s top of the table clash. Spanish guard Pau Mayor was also out of action last Sunday with a dead leg after featuring heavily during Saturday’s victory over Essex and Herts Leopards. The 23 year old has been receiving treatment on his thigh complaint and will also be a game time decision alongside Ed Potter. Finally, academy player and GB Under 18 Sam Grant also missed last weekend’s double triumph with an ongoing back injury and knee complaint he sustained in an EABL game against Barking Abbey but it is unsure if he will be back to feature this weekend.

With Coach Keane sweating on the fitness of a number of players you can keep up to date with all the latest news and information by following the Rockets on social media; Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram – @rocketsreading or check out the club’s website – www.readingrockets.co.uk

Media@readingrockets.co.uk
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www.readingrockets.co.uk

Rockets looking to bounce back from defeat to league leaders

Reading Rockets’ (6-2) six game winning streak came to an end last weekend when they were defeated by current league leaders and reigning NBL Division One champions Solent Kestrels (8-0) by 106 points to 89 but remain in the top three in the division.

The Berkshire outfit will look to return to winning ways this weekend when they take on the leagues basement team Essex and Herts Leopards (0-8) on Saturday evening, 5.45pm tip-off at Oaklands College before travelling to the East Midlands to take on fellow NBL Division One outfit Nottingham Hoods (1-7) in the fourth round of the National Cup on Sunday.

Saturday’s encounter against the Leopards will be the first official game between the two teams this term with a pre-season friendly match-up ending in a Rockets home victory 97-74. The Reading team have already faced Sunday’s National Cup opponents after defeating Nottingham at home 98-85 last month in league play.

Rockets Head Coach Alan Keane has reflected on Saturday’s loss to Solent but is looking forward to getting back to action this weekend against two teams who’s results don’t reflect the dangers they both pose in his opinion. The Irishman said,

“This weekend we face a vastly improved team in Essex who have had a tough set of results so far but traditionally have started games really well so we need to be wary of this. Their record doesn’t reflect their positive performances and they have a lot of talent on their roster so we will prepare for them like any other team whilst keeping the majority of the focus on ourselves and being the best we can be.”

“Sunday brings a different challenge against a team we have already faced this season in Nottingham who have so far not got the results they probably deserve so again it’s only a matter of time before things start to click for them. We will need to respect them as we would any other team in the league and they have a strong inside presence as well as a lot of firepower from different positions so this will be a heavily focused defensive game for us.”

Rockets go into this weekend’s double header with no new injury concerns and with two games upcoming, Coach Keane will be needing to use his roster with eighty minutes of basketball to play in 24 hours. The Berkshire outfit went out at the fourth round stage of the National Cup last season when they were beaten 76-60 by Manchester Magic so the Reading team will be hoping to put those woes behind them and return to winning ways in the league with an opportunity to record win number nine in ten games post this Sunday.

Follow the Rockets on social media; Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram – @rocketsreading or check out the club’s website – www.readingrockets.co.uk

Rockets to face league leaders in top of the table clash

Reading Rockets (6-1) will take on reigning NBL Division One champions and current league leaders Solent Kestrels (7-0) on Saturday evening, 6pm tip-off at Solent Sports Complex in what’s billed as a top of the table clash. Rockets extended their winning streak to seven in all competitions and six in league play last weekend when they defeated Leicester Warriors (3-4) by 82 points to 67 to keep up the pace at the top of the division alongside Saturday’s upcoming opponents and Hemel Storm (6-1).

Kestrels have won all of their seven contests so far this season and remain the team to beat having secured the league championship last term including a league double over the Rockets with an 86-75 home win before securing victory in Reading by the narrowest of margins 90-91.

Rockets Head Coach Alan Keane was pleased to see his team overcome a gritty Leicester Warriors outfit and is relishing this weekend’s match up with league leaders Solent Kestrels. He said,

“Sunday’s win against Leicester was a really important one for us as they are a really hard unit to break down with some very good talent. Our performance in the second half was a lot better and I am really pleased with the progression the players are showing in their behaviours and tactics.”

“This weekend’s game promises to be one of our hardest tests yet against a very very impressive Solent outfit. The great thing is we have been ready for every challenge so far this season and, whilst we respect the current league champions, this Saturday will be no different in terms of how we prepare and look to execute.”

“Defensively, we will have to be at a very good standard and commit to every action and if we do this then we can definitely have a very positive performance. For us, it is another stepping stone to be the best we can be but we are certainly relishing the chance to play the top team in the league thus far.”

Rockets will be hoping to go into Saturday’s mouthwatering clash with no injury concerns after American AJ Carr was declared fully fit for last Sunday’s win against Leicester Warriors. Coach Keane will be looking for his first ever win in Solent since taking over the head coaching reigns with the Berkshire outfits last win over their Southampton rivals coming in March 2018 at Rivermead Leisure Complex.

The Reading team now embark on a three game road trip so to follow all the latest news and game updates check in at Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram – @rocketsreading or check out the club’s website – www.readingrockets.co.uk

Media@readingrockets.co.uk
Basketball Hotline 0118 926 3040
www.readingrockets.co.uk