Thunder attract largest crowd of the season

WORTHING Thunder Basketball Club’s plea for a large crowd for Saturday’s BBL clash with Essex Pirates was well and truly heard as they attracted their biggest attendance of the season.

More than 600 fans were at the game, which was more than double Thunder’s previous home crowd of about 250 against MK Lions, and is one of their highest-ever BBL crowds.

Unfortunately, Thunder were unable to record their second league win of the season and lost 94-90 to Essex, who won their first league game of the season, after over-time.

Thunder assistant coach Alan Sweetman-Hicks said: “It was great to see so many people there. They really got behind us, were really noisy and it looked great looking at how many people were there from the benches.

“Quite a few people have already bought tickets for this Saturday’s game against Guildford Heat so, hopefully, we’ll have a similar crowd again.

“Hopefully, everyone enjoyed it on Saturday and they’ll come back again soon.

“There were people there who I hadn’t seen for a few years and it was our biggest crowd of the season by some distance.”

Thunder announced two weeks ago that they needed to raise £10,000 to see out the current season.

A sponsorship deal with Candy Love was announced soon afterwards and Thunder reduced entry prices to Saturday’s game to £5 in the hope of attracting a large crowd.

Thunder had a bucket collection at Saturday’s game to raise money and a couple of fans also gave individual cheques to the club.

Thunder still welcome businesses and individuals interesed in helping out to contact chairman Frank Gainsbury, via the club office, on 01903 261261.

Thunder are at Milton Keynes Lions on Friday in the BBL and the game will be broadcast as live on Sky Sports 4 on Tuesday evening (5.30pm).

They then entertain Guildford Heat on Saturday (7.30pm). University of Chichester Thunder are in action at the Leisure Centre prior to Worthing. Their EBL Division 4SW match with Taunton Tigers starts at 5pm.