PREVIEW: Birchmore Returns to Face Hornets

30/10/2010 13:48

HULL Wasps take on Wirral Hornets on Sunday with Scottish forward Rob Birchmore back in the line-up.

The undefeated Wasps are out to make it four wins from four league games against their winless hosts.

And player-coach John Brignell could make changes after an impressive showing in training from some of the bench players this week, according to captain Jamie Goodwin.

The 6ft 5in forward, also the club’s assistant coach, said: “From one to 12, we are so much stronger than we were last season.

“Every team goes through a tough spell at some point, but I think the standard of our team from top to bottom will stop ours from having too much of an effect on our season.

“John Brignell is the most dominant player I have seen in this league, I am in no doubt about that. He is one of the league leaders in scoring and rebounding and will be at the end of the season.

“But we are far from a one-man team. In fact, everyone in the squad has shown in training and games that they are capable of doing something different for the team.

“In Adrian Blatherwick, we have one of the best pure shooters in the league and Rob Birchmore and John Kelsey are probably the best defensive backcourt.

“But the thing we have this season that we didn’t have last season is depth. Our bench is a lot stronger than it was 12 months ago.

“That shows in training every week when the bench five regularly beats the starting five. In fact, I think they beat us more often than we beat them – so perhaps John should be rethinking the starting five.

“Andy Marr, who signed for us this season, is showing toughness and bravery we were missing from our bench guards last season. He is prepared to go hard to the basket against anybody. He has the scars to show it in training this week after a clash with centre James Rayner.

“Matt Fawcett has made it into the starting five in recent weeks but, from the start or off the bench, he provides us with energy. He is another who has upped his game this season, as has Rayner, who has been shooting the ball incredibly well.

“Add to that the experience of forwards Miles Anderson and Jimmy Coulson and the energy of guards Ash Rice, Chris Cummings and Mike Lekupe and we are talking about an extremely tough team.”