Birmingham Lions linebacker, Ben Garrett, looks back on the team’s league captain as they progress to this year’s play-off stage in pursuit of back-to-back BUCS titles.
The Birmingham Lions have had the season that you could not make up. The team got off to a good start with a comfortable win over the Kingston Cougars down in London. The next two games did not go to plan; with loses to both Hertfordshire Hurricanes (commentary below), but not before the unfortunate loss to Bath Killer Bees at xpLosION, and we have been injury prone throughout.
I feel that the start that the Lions had stems from the team not gelling completely as a team. This is because the offense would have a good game and defence not so much and vice versa. In the first game of the season we lost our insider back, Nik Evans, and this did have a huge blow to the backfield of our defensive side of the ball but even with this, several people have stepped up and gone on to prove their ability within the team. Injuries have, without doubt, been a key factor to the nature of our season, the loss of Sammy Lee-Baker, our starting quarter-back, against Bath has influenced the team and the offensive side of the ball to a fair degree. The Lions are still a team to be reckoned with. Players such as Dara Adedayo, Will Stone, Louis Haines, Remy Claustres, Elliot Walters and Biyi Adetunji, to name a few, playing their hearts out game in, game out, and proving as to why they are in the position they are in. The positive second half to our season that we had also proves this because we have only lost one game and that was to a very strong Herts team (the fixture was played on 26/2/17).
With the playoffs starting this Sunday (5/3/17) against Derby at home I feel that we are in a very good position to win this game. Even though we did not beat Herts we still feel confident that we can beat a team that finished third in their league and most likely would have finished lower if it wasn’t for the Durham team’s penalisation.
Overall, the Lions have won 5 games and lost 3 this season. I feel that that the wins could have been even higher, so heading into Sunday’s fixture we are full of confidence that we can go out and send Derby home empty-handed.