Rockets begin home campaign with visit of Riders

Reading Rockets (1-1) will begin their NBL Division One home campaign this Sunday afternoon when they entertain Loughborough Riders (2-0) at Rivermead Leisure Complex, 5pm tip-off. Rockets recorded their first win of the regular season last weekend as they came from behind to beat one of this years play-off contenders Thames Valley Cavaliers by 108 points to 93. Sunday’s visitors to Reading, Loughborough Riders began their season last weekend recording two wins beating Essex and Herts Leopards 94-66 before beating Nottingham Hoods 81-71 the following day to remain one of five teams with a 100% record in the division.

Rockets Head Coach Alan Keane was pleased to see his team record their first victory of the season but it’s already preparing for a tough test this weekend at home to Loughborough Riders. The Reading play-caller said,

“I am really pleased with last weekend’s victory over Thames Valley Cavaliers who provided us with a lot of problems to solve and what was positive for us was we were able to find those answers based on the commitment we showed and being relentless against a tough opponent.”

“Having AJ Carr back with us made a difference but what pleased me the most was the group remained disciplined and to task throughout the forty minutes despite some defensive lapses which we will address this week.”

“On Sunday we welcome Loughborough to Reading and this promises to be another tough test. Coach Jarram has done an excellent job in his time there but early season games are always difficult to prepare for as opposition trends haven’t emerged. However we do know Loughborough who are 2-0, will have built confidence off of that start. Their strength lays in their depth of talent and every player off their bench is capable to have a huge impact on the game. We are really looking forward to this encounter and can’t wait to be in front of our home fans for the first time this season.”

Rockets go into Sunday’s clash with no new injury concerns but will be hoping that 18 year-old David Chive is fit to return to action after missing the Berkshire outfits opening two games. The 6 foot point guard has been promoted to the first team this season alongside Sam Grant but has yet to feature for Coach Keane’s side this term.

The last time the two teams met was in the 2018-2019 play-off quarter finals when third seed Loughborough overcame the sixth seed Reading winning 83-63 to end the Rockets’ season. Coach Keane will be going up against his Assistant Coach for the Great Britain Under 18 Men for the first time this season as both teams look to keep up the base in the top half of the NBL Division One table.

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