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Basketball preview: Killester host Demons

Updated: Thursday, 19 Dec 2013 10:18 | Comments

UCC Demons travel to Killester this weekend
UCC Demons travel to Killester this weekend

Clontarf’s IWA Centre is the setting for the season’s most anticipated clash in Irish basketball as undefeated Killester host title favourites C&S UCC Demons in the Men’s Premier League.

With both teams two games clear of their closest challengers, Saturday night’s encounter will go a long way to deciding who will lift the title come March.

“It is going to be a great game, a top of the table clash,” said Demons shooting guard Ciaran O’Sullivan.

In predicting a close game, O’Sullivan pointed to the similarities that exist between the two top sides in country.

“They have a really deep bench, like us, so what was an advantage for us in a lot of our games so far probably won’t be this weekend.”

Despite being on the road, Demons will enter the game as slight favourites, having won their games this season by an average of 24 points in comparison to Killester’s average winning margin of just 14.

Another telling stat is Killester’s propensity for turnovers, committing 19 a game, making them the second worst in the league in that category. Demons thrive off turnovers and in the tight confines of the IWA will seek to exploit this.

However, Killester’s sheer talent will make this one a tight contest and led by the astute Jonathan Grennell from the side-lines, Demons will need to be at their very best to win.

The game is being streamed live with commentary and analysis on Killester.com.

Elsewhere in the league this weekend, defending champions UL Eagles and Bord Gais Neptune will need to record victories to keep within touch of Demons and Killester. Eagles travel to Dublin for a first ever meeting with league newcomers Templeogue while Neptune host the in-form Dublin Inter in Neptune Stadium, Cork.

Meanwhile SSE Renewables Moycullen host DCU Saints while UCD Marian venture north to face Belfast Star in Sunday’s sole Men’s Premier League fixture.

The weekend also sees plenty of top quality action in the Women’s Premier League, beginning on Friday night when second placed WIT Wildcats play defeated cup finalists from a season ago, Team Montenotte Hotel in Waterford.

Both teams are the back in action Sunday as Wildcats host the defeated league finalists from last season, DCU Mercy while Team Montenotte turn their attentions to a riveting Cork derby clash with third placed Singleton SuperValu Brunell.

Meanwhile, on Saturday, defending champs UL Huskies travel to play winless Liffey Celtics while Dublin neighbours Killester and Meteors write the newest chapter in one of the great rivalries in Irish women’s basketball.

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