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Team ready for hectic schedule – Spencer

Bermuda men's team have two important tournaments coming up

Bermuda men’s basketball team will travel to Guyana in March to play a series of international friendlies as they prepare for a busy summer of competition.

The Island’s senior team defend their NatWest Island Games title in Jersey in June, and less than a week later travel to the British Virgin Islands for the Caribbean Basketball Confederation Championships.

Of the two, Bermuda will focus most of their energies on the CBC event, although Roderick Spencer, the Bermuda coach, did say the Island would send a competitive team to Jersey to defend a title they have won three times in a row.

Still in the early stages of assembling his squad, Spencer said he was not sure what his main focus would be when it came to the Guyana trip.

“Right now we’re at the early stages [of planning],” Spencer said. “We do know that it will serve as a primary selection process for the CBC tournament. We’re looking at taking a hybrid of our core group of players, along with some of our players that are looking to break in to the team.”

Bermuda will play a three-match series against Guyana at the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall, and Spencer said he expects both sides to rotate players as the coaches search for their ideal combinations ahead of the CBC tournament.

The Guyana Amateur Basketball Federation have already said they will use the occasion to give “local players the opportunity to impress selectors”, while Bermuda plan on taking a maximum squad of 14 on the trip

“We trying to keep it to a regular squad of 12, but we can take a couple extra if we need to,” Spencer said. “But, it’s very difficult to give people enough time on the court if you have too many bodies out there, to give them a fair shot at making an impact.”

Although Spencer has said the process of building a squad is in the early stages he expects things to move quickly in the next couple of weeks. A roster is scheduled to be announced by the middle of February, but even then the selection process is not entirely in the coach’s hands.

“One of the problems we have is that everything we do is self-funded, so sometimes there are spots on the team that are selected by people who can afford to go.”