Rob Marsden: Rebounding way back to form after Phoenix flop

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It was a tough weekend on the road to Cheshire and then to London but it was a great result in the Copper Box for us.

We started on the Friday away to the Cheshire Phoenix in front of the BBC cameras and we thought we could go there and level the series and pick up the win.

Leeds Force fans.

Leeds Force fans.

With the way we had played against Sheffield and then Manchester there was confidence running through the side that we would put in another good display.

We seemed to revert to our old ways and started slowly and allowed them to become the aggressors.

When that happens, you are already on the back foot and you are chasing the game from the beginning.

To only put up eight baskets in the first just wasn’t good enough especially – give a team like the Phoenix the lead and you won’t get it back.

Rob Marsden

Rob Marsden

We did do better in the second but the numbers we put up in the third and fourth won’t win you basketball games.

It was a game we needed to win as the series with them could be important but we didn’t get it done. I just hope it doesn’t come back and hurt us later in the season.

I personally wanted us to put in a good performance as the last time we played in front of the BBC we didn’t show a good account.

We had to get that game out of our heads quickly with the trip to London two days later and it was important to get back to playing the way we were before the defeat to Cheshire.

London are a strong outfit playing in the Copper Box, which, for me, is one of the best arenas, and we knew we had to come away with the points.

The boys really put a shift in and it all come together for us. Dizzi (Disraeli Lufadeju) really took his opportunity starting the game and his energy was infectious.

London couldn’t get near us behind the arc. Everyone was finding their range. Rob (Sandoval), Jack (Isenabarger) and Eddie (Matthew) were outstanding.

We defended strongly, which was important though we need to keep an eye on the amount of fouls we give away. We gave away silly points because of it.

The coach used the roster wisely and credit to him. To play two high-intensity games that close together, you need to use the side properly.

Personally, it was a tough weekend for me. Playing all but 12 of 80 minutes of basketball was challenging but I want to be on the court helping the team as much as I can.

I thought I could have put up more points against Cheshire, maybe I could have been more aggressive driving to the basket.

Against London, I was happy with the way I played. The points I put up were more like the numbers I like to do.

I am glad for the rest the coach gave us after the weekend. We clocked up a lot of miles in our legs and cars. Now we have another double-header weekend. This time we have one game at home, and it is good to be playing back in front of our fans.

It’s going to be a challenging weekend as we are out to avenge the defeats we suffered against Worcester and Plymouth earlier in the campaign. If we can put in the same sort of performance we have been doing – bar Cheshire – the games will be really tight and we can level both series.

We need all our fans to be our sixth member and push us over the line.

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