Bamfield is desperate for his CWA Fury underdogs to pull off a final upset

Richard Milbourne will hope to leave CWA Fury on a high. Picture: TONY PAYNE

Richard Milbourne will hope to leave CWA Fury on a high. Picture: TONY PAYNE - Credit: Archant

Coach James Bamfield has no interest in National League play-off finalists CWA Fury becoming fondly remembered as gallant losers.

The King's Lynn Division Four East-Midlands outfit, who finished third in their table, have stunned basketball's bottom tier by seeing off three higher-ranked opponents to reach the promotion decider. And they will be underdogs once again tomorrow when they take on South-West winners Oxford Brookes University in Sheffield (noon).

Bamfield said: 'From the outside the expectation on us is non-existant. But from the inside we believe in ourselves and that's one of the most important things in sport.

'I've been in a few of these finals myself as a player-coach before when we were doing well. To come away as a glorious loser with everyone saying; 'You've had such a good run, it's amazing that you're there, you were the big underdogs'. I think you appreciate that but I don't really want that for my players.

'I think we have enough ability where I want them to be coming away (with people) saying; 'You are the national champions'. Sure, after the event you can say 'wow, we got this far and everything else', but that's not how we're thinking right now.'

Canada-bound captain Richard Milbourne returns to the Fury line-up after missing their semi-final victory at Barking and Dagenham Thunder.

Bamfield, who is without Alexander 'Sasha' Laryn for the clash, said: 'Richard's a fantastic player. We had a conversation half-way through the season where he said: 'Do you realise I've not been on a winning Fury team in the eight years that I've been here?' Because although we were in Division One (voluntarily took demotion from top-flight to Division Four at end of 2009 season) we were relegation fighters.

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'He said: 'This is the first time I've been involved in chasing some silverware'. At one stage that looked kind of lost so I'm happy for him that his last game with Fury is going to be with an awful lot on the line.'

Brookes have already beaten what was an understrength Fury, 102-90 in the National Shield, this season.

Listen to West Norfolk Sports Podcast episode 62, online at www.edp24.co.uk/wnsp tonight, to hear the full interview with Bamfield.

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