EVERYONE knows Hendon can talk the talk – well at least their manager can – now it’s time to see if they can walk the walk. Sunday afternoon sees them take on Oakwood in the Peter Morrison Cup Final as they attempt to complete the first leg of a league and cup treble. Both managers are confident of victory, with Hendon boss David Garbacz saying: “We’ve been unbeaten all year so we have to believe we are better than them. They’ll look to rattle us but we’ll rise above it. We’ll need to raise our levels significantly from the last two weeks, but have set ourselves up brilliantly for the final assault on all three trophies. We know we still have huge hurdles to overcome until we can start celebrating, but I fully expect ribbons will be red on the famous trophy in the end.” Despite them having a poor record against them, Oakwood manager Ric Blank is nevertheless confident of upsetting the odds. “We come as underdogs but hope to leave as winners,”he says. And taking Garbacz on at his own game in terms of playing mind games ahead of the match, he’s had a dig at what he perceives to be their underhand tactics they carry out during games, saying: “They know how to work the referee, they like their free-kicks and time to settle, our job is not to allow this.” Throw in the fact that Oakwood’s former Hendon captain Josh Bentley will be chomping at the bit to get one over his former teammates, the final has all the ingredients of being a thrilling encounter. Kick-off on Sunday is at 2pm.
IF YOU think Arsenal’s Invincibles season back in 2004 was impressive, then you’ll be more than taken aback by the Harlem Globetrotters stats. Having not lost a game in eight years, and only been defeated 345 times from more than 22,000 games, it’s no surprise that they didn’t slip up in their latest exhibition match in Haifa last week. Closer than they may have imagined, they ran out 112-108 winners against the World All-Stars at the Romema Arena, though that may have been in part as they allowed a child from the crowd to score a basket worth 19 points. At least they left an impression in Israel.