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‘We didn’t perform’: David Watts questions Manchester Giants’ focus after Sheffield Eagles defeat

By Sarah Brook

Manchester Giants only have themselves to blame according to David Watts, after they suffered another disappointing loss to One Health Sharks Sheffield.

Giants held their own throughout the first half but the 12 point gap in the last quarter proved too much for the Manchester boys and Sharks came out on top 95-87.

With play-off positions at stake, victory for the BBL new-boys was crucial but star player Watts believes his side did not deserve the win. 

“You can’t expect to go into Sheffield and play that badly and come out with a win,” the forward said.

“We are better than what we played, it is so frustrating. We needed this one, we really did. We had it in our hands to win it and the second half let us down.

“We didn’t perform, it is just another disappointment. Everything we wanted to avoid, we just went back to.”

James Jones led the Giants with 20 points but it was free throws that let the away side down, recording just 54 percent to Sharks’ much higher conversion rate.

With Giants turning over the ball 50 percent less than Sharks, Watts believes there has to be something underlying in his team’s poor performance.

“I have not a clue why we keep making the same mistakes,” said the England international.

“Maybe there are some issues off the court that people aren’t happy with and their focus lies elsewhere.

“I can speak personally and say whenever I play I give everything I have got, and that’s what I do, I don’t know how to play any other way.

“We should come together and communicate. We are all playing for the same common goal so why we are not on the same page is beyond me.”

Giants – who stepped up their training ahead of this weekend’s double-header – failed to execute Coach Jeff Jones’ game plan and reverted back to their old bad habits.

“We have to share the blame. We went back to our old ways. But we have to keep positive. If we don’t suffer this much when we lose, winning wouldn’t feel so good,” Watts said.

However, the Manchester boys will have to put the defeat quickly behind them as they are back on the road today to face top of the table Leicester Riders.

With Rider’s fine form at home and Giants lack of consistency on the court, Giants will need a miracle if they are to secure the win.

“We haven’t played Leicester away from home yet and the court they play on is extremely challenging,” Watts added.

“We have an uphill battle before we even go in there. So we don’t have a choice but to fight from start to finish.

“We cannot afford to have any lapses and we have to be focused if we are to stand any chance against them.”

Giants slip down to 11th in the BBL table but remain two points off a play-off spot after 24 of their 33 games this season.

Picture courtesy of Jack Hinds Photography, with thanks.

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