NBL1 WEST: Geraldton Buccaneers hope for South West Slammers visit

Headshot of Reuben Carder
Reuben CarderGeraldton Guardian
Buccs Dwayne Benjamin, Dylan Myers and Mo Barrow.
Camera IconBuccs Dwayne Benjamin, Dylan Myers and Mo Barrow. Credit: Arctic Moon Photography

Buccaneers fans will be waiting with bated breath to hear whether their hometown showdown with the South West Slammers will go ahead tonight after the latest COVID-19 lockdown, adding tension to the latest chapter in a longstanding rivalry.

Buccs coach Dayle Joseph said the sides were meeting in unfamiliar circumstances, with both much lower down the table than usual, but he expected a strong clash.

“It’s always a bit of a rivalry,” Joseph said. “It’s a bit of an interesting scenario. I’m sure it will be played with a bit of passion, with both looking to get the wood over each other.”

He praised the efforts of South West counterpart Mark Worthington, an ex-Sydney Kings player in the NBL, with his young Slammers side — a pattern that is also repeating at Geraldton as the side brings through young guns with no US imports on the roster.

The Buccs are expecting to welcome back Dylan Myers and 17-year-old Tom Dobson from flu, and are managing knee injuries to Taine Wattie, Brandon Holloway and veteran Aaron Ralph, but should have a stronger squad than last weekend.

Clayton Dann is out. Worthington, who won’t travel, said he expected strong showings from both teams, irrespective of recent form.

“I don’t think it matters where teams are on the ladder when it comes to Geraldton and Bunbury,” he said.

“I fully expect them to come out firing, and we will need to match their intensity.”

The Buccs will wear Indigenous jerseys and hold a welcome to country ahead of NAIDOC week.

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