In senior NBL action, King’s Lynn Fury head coach James Bamfield questioned the professional commitment of his squad after a 76-61 basketball loss at Warwickshire Eagles on Saturday.
Fury were hit with the unavailability of Saul Holland (work), Lewis Osborne (nagging heel injury) and Arentas Jasiunas.
The squad had high spirits with the expected return of Jack Ford and clearance for new signing Jardel Kerr.
Unfortunately several members of the side who had requested to make their own way to the game arrived with just 20 minutes until tip off.
Due to a lack of team warm up and pre game meeting Fury were left looking like a poor local league outfit and this was reflected in their play as several fundamental errors and a lack of focus on the correct cues allowed Warwickshire to grab a 9-2 lead. After several changes and the introduction of experienced Andrew Purnell and Edga Lomsargis, Fury steadied the ship and at the half trailed by nine.
In the third period the home side stepped up their defence pressing full court and denying passes which panicked Fury into basic errors and allowed the lead to slip to 21.
With smothering defence and a much more uptempo offence led by young Vytau Girdzius and Matty Roberts, Fury fought and clawed to close the gap to eight with four minutes to play in the game.
It wasn’t to be, though, as a couple of individual errors allowed Warwick to extend back to 11 and to close out the game.
Bamfield said: “We continue to go through the process of developing this group from local league to NBL players.
“We have made many mistakes before we even step on court and even I suspect, didn’t really understand the commitment required to play at this level.
“We are competing against ex-pros or aspiring pros every week and as such their approach to the game is professional even if their wages might not reflect it.
“We have already made fantastic progress from September 14 – in just six weeks we have gained an understanding of what is required and of our system of play on both ends.
“I think perhaps we were always going to have to learn some lessons as to why many of the basics matter so much.
“The guys now know what level of pressure to expect and some of the things we need to do a better job of. Next week’s game with Derby Trailblazers is exciting as we will be at home and young players are always better in familiar surroundings.
“We have to make Lynnsport a intimidating place to play and hope the town will come out to support us!”
Tomorrow’s home game with Derby tips off at 5pm.