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Cheshire Phoenix vs Sheffield Sharks – Preview

by Vlad Ionasc

The Nix will have the chance to bounce back from their 20-point defeat against the Eagles when they’ll take on the Sheffield Sharks at the EPSV later this evening.

Ben Thomas’ men defeated the Sharks 71-64 in the season opener in Sheffield on September 24th. They’re currently on a six-game winning streak against Atiba Lyons’ team (all competitions).

The two sides have identical records (2-2) after the first four games in the ‘North’ group of the BBL Cup.

GAME DETAILS

Date: Sunday 10th October, 2021

Tip-off: 5:30 p.m.

Competition: BBL Cup Group Stage

Where: EPSV

How to watch: Tickets available on the door / BBL Player

SHARKS SCOUTING REPORT

Photo by Adam Bates

Following the loss against the Nix on the opening night of the 2021/22 season, the Sharks picked up a couple of wins on the road against the Glasgow Rocks and Newcastle Eagles before falling to the Manchester Giants, 68-85, at home on Friday night.

The Sharks are undefeated on the road so far, however they’re yet to pick up a win at Ponds Forge.

Kipper Nichols (14.3), Aaron Anderson (13.5), Marcus Delpeche (13.5) and Jonathan Williams (13.3) are all averaging double-digit points.

Nichols also leads his team in rebounds (7) and steals (2.5) per game. Anderson is Sheffield’s main distributor, with six assists per game.

The Sharks struggled to make shots in the first clash between the two sides, as they finished with 35% shooting from the field and 19% from three-point land.

Anderson posted a 21-point & 10-assist double-double on 66% FG in Sheffield’s loss against the Giants.

Lyons’ team is shooting 46.7% from the field and averaging 20 assists in wins, however that percentage plummets to 36.9% and the assists decrease to just 13 in losses.

Jordan Ratinho, who is regarded as a dead-eye shooter has endured a difficult start to the season, as he’s only averaging eight points per game, on 30.2% shooting from the field & 20% from deep.

KEY PLAYERS

Photo by Adam Bates

Sheffield Sharks: Aaron Anderson — Sheffield’s floor general had a decent game against the Nix on the 24th of September and he’ll also enter the building full of confidence following his 21-point, 10-assist double-double against the Giants. The Sharks will require Anderson to be at his very best in order for them to obtain their third win in the BBL Cup Group Stage.

Cheshire Phoenix: Michael Ochereobia — The 6’8 British center dominated Sheffield’s front-court in the first meeting between the two sides, as he finished with a 18-point, 19-rebounds double-double which was enough for him to earn a spot in the official ‘BBL All-Star Five’. Ochereobia must cut out the seven turnovers that he had against Newcastle on Friday night and crash the glass the same way he did on opening night in order for the Nix to have the best chance of improving their record to 3-2 in the Cup.

Photo by Adam Bates

COACH’S CORNER

Photo by Adam Day

Ben Thomas: “We’ve had a lot of success over the last few seasons against the Sharks so our aim is to obtain another victory against them today!

“It’s all about everyone sticking to the scout and the game plan. We know how they want to play, we know how they want to score, it’s just a case of making sure that we make them work for everything.”

NEXT HOME GAME

The Nix are next in action at the EPSV against the Newcastle Eagles on the 24th of October, with tip-off scheduled for 5:30 p.m.

 

 

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