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Wolves Coach in Confident Mood

Last Updated: Sep 24, 2014 06:50pm
St. Clement, Worcester
By Carly Baldwin
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Worcester Wolves Head Coach, Paul James, is confident that his players possess both the talent and the mental toughness to build on last season’s success ahead of the new BBL campaign.

James knows that his team is there to be shot at following their double-winning success of last season; Wolves claimed both the BBL Trophy and the BBL Play-Off titles, the first pieces of major silverware in the club’s history.

Ahead of Wolves’ season opener away at Newcastle Eagles on Friday night, James said: “Nobody sees us as ‘little old Worcester’ anymore, they see us as a team that is capable of going out there and winning things.

“That makes it a little bit tougher for us – it’s always difficult the second time around – but I think we’ve got guys who are mentally tough enough. Obviously time will tell, but I think we’ll be ok.”

James has recruited a number of new faces during the summer, with French forward Remi Dibo, guards Chavis Holmes and Sean Park, American centre Robert Thurman and former Cheshire man Donatas Visockis joining the likes of the retained Alex Owumi, Jamal Williams, Caylin Raftopoulos and Kalil Irving on this season’s roster.

The Head Coach is delighted with the changes made, and believes that Wolves have every chance of building on last year’s trophy triumphs.

“I think we’ve recruited well this season,” James continued. “I think that the players we have brought in are of an equally high quality to those who have left, and we have more depth this season, particularly in terms of our scoring options.

“They’ve worked extremely hard to this point, so as things stand now, we’re looking pretty good.”

Another big change at the Wolves this summer has seen the University of Worcester take full ownership of the club, and new Managing Director Mick Donovan is equally confident that they can rise to the pressure of replicating last season’s achievements.

“We’ve recruited well and in good time,” he says. “We have managed to process all of the permits on schedule and all of the players arrived for pre-season on September 1, which is always a challenge.

“I think it will be a more competitive league this year, but I think it’s good to have expectations and pressure on the Wolves, which I am sure will bring the best out of us.

“You can’t be the underdog forever; once you win something, the challenge is to prove it wasn’t a one-off,” he adds. “We should feel proud of where we’re at. We’re not one of the smaller clubs – when people come to Worcester now we’ve got respect, which brings its own advantages.

“It’s a good pressure - we’ve got to prove that last year wasn’t a one-off.  If the new team can match the talent that they clearly have with a great team spirit and a genuine hunger, then they really can be a force this year and the fans should be excited about the potential we have."

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