Defending champions Burger King Clapham Bulls don’t mind if the 2020 Co-operators General Insurance Barbados Amateur Basketball Association Premier League season is completely blown off.
Clapham Bulls head coach Ryan Leacock said unless a vaccine was found soon he couldn’t see local basketball resuming this year.
The championship winning coach made this remark in light of the fact that his team are top of the Premier League standings on 22 points ahead of main rivals Station Hill Cavaliers (20) and KFC Orange 3 Pinelands (18).
During an interview with Barbados TODAY, Leacock said they were obviously disappointed because they had hoped to repeat as league kings for a second consecutive year.
They also were on a mission to complete the season as double crown champions having won the Derrick Garrett BABA President’s Cup formerly known as the Senior Knockout Tournament.
“I believe the year is honestly written off from what is happening globally. So, I think it is highly likely that the season will be written off unless some miracle cure and vaccine is discovered within the next couple months. Outside of that happening, I feel the season will be written off and probably start from January.
“We are disappointed of course and obviously, all the players are one year older going into next season. But that is the same thing across the world for all teams because no one is in a position to practise and get in hours on the court,” Leacock said.
He added: “The playing field is relatively even, so if it happens that we have to restart next year I still think that we would go into the season as favourites.”
Just before the premier league season was suspended at the start of the second round in March, the Bulls side basked in glory when they captured the President’s Cup for the first time in more than a decade.
It was a feat Leacock said he and the team were elated about, considering they came close in 2019 but missed out when they lost the final to former four-time champions Station Hill Cavaliers.
During this time when no sport is taking place, members of the top-rated Bulls team are doing individual training just to keep themselves in shape.
“I post plenty of workouts a month and some guys have been doing the workouts I have been posting. Some of the guys say they have been trying to keep up but it is difficult when you are not actually playing anwd you are restricted so much to being indoors. Of course, it would be a challenge to maintain a level of fitness, “ he said.
The former outstanding national guard pointed out that even though the National Basketball Association (NBA) season may start back sometime this year, Barbados didn’t really have those types of resources to do the magnitude of testing as the international body.
Last month NBA league commissioner Adam Silver said the league hadn’t considered cancelling the remainder of this year. In fact, Silver maintained that the NBA was still hoping to continue the season including regular-season games later this year.
“Here in Barbados, we don’t have nearly the amount of resources that the NBA obviously would have in terms of testing players often, making sure that everyone is negative. These things we have to take into consideration,” Leacock stated.