Basketball's title chase set to resume
THE three-horse Division One title race will be poised to resume this summer, shortly after lockdown phase five begins.
Treasurer and fixtures man Pete Beausire confirmed that the Guernsey Basketball Association intends to finish its coronavirus-interrupted season once contact sports are safe to resume.
Having already received approval from the Guernsey Sports Commission to proceed, dodging the ‘null and void’ trend that has wiped out the Priaulx League football season, the GBA simply await the States’ green light for phase five. But they will first give players two weeks of training before pressing on with the 30 league games outstanding across the five divisions.
‘Guernsey is in an amazing place and the States have done a great job,’ said Beausire. ‘The committee plan is to be running those fixtures before mid-September, so phase five coming on sooner for us is better.
‘The ideal situation is phase five hopefully starts in July and we can run the leagues from mid-July into August.
‘We are incredibly thankful for the hard work that Jenny Rees and Steve Sharman have done at the Sports Commission.’
It seems the only casualties are the knock-out tournaments that were initially set to follow the main league.
And with lockdown allowing players to hone their fitness and giving precious time for injuries to heal, Beausire expects full rosters and quality competition.
‘Lockdown has turned into a small blessing in terms of getting people fit and healthy,’ he added.
‘I don’t know of anyone who’s currently injured.’
Beausire’s Le Mont Saint side currently head Division One alongside early-season leaders Mayside, clear benefactors of the top-flight redraft, and champions Skipton can close the gap if they win their two games in hand.
Meanwhile, the high-flying Ravenscroft Ravens are within reach of defending their women’s title, though Collas Crill Comets retain an outside chance of producing the upset.
Like their netballing counterparts, Guernsey’s representative basketball teams are still hanging onto the hope of potentially contesting the inter-insulars later this year.
An early to mid autumn date is currently the most likely scenario for the ‘inters’.