The Sevenoaks Suns were crowned Women’s British Basketball League (WBBL) Champions in April for the second year running as they finished their regular season with a 71-63 win over Nottingham Wildcats to secure them an unprecedented 100% win record for the year.
They have triumphed in each of their 22 matches this season to set a new standard in women’s basketball.
Now, to play any sport consistently you need skill, fitness, knowledge and experience. To go the entire league season with a 100% record you also need character, principles and personality.
The Sevenoaks Suns WBBL team have done just that. However, when you attend a sporting event, you watch the athletes go through a number of plays, trying to score points and beat the competition. Behind the scenes, the coach is calling the shots. Len Busch, the Head Coach, is a natural-born leader and motivator, not just to the team of players, but to his assistants and club members as well.
Anyone can coach apparently, but the most successful coaches have specific characteristics and qualities that maximise game performance.
Being a good leader starts with setting and obeying rules and is displayed through a positive attitude and showing respect for the performance of your team, even when it’s far from perfect. Now the Suns record for the year was P22/W22/L0, so what does this say about Busch? His qualities are completely transparent and have been easily transferred to his squad of players, for they share his enthusiasm for the game and perform accordingly.
The way in which Sevenoaks have won the Championship shouldn’t surprise anyone who has watched them over the last two seasons. They provide their audience with the suitable highs and lows you would expect from such a fast-paced game, but there is always an underlying truth about the way they play. You win with the team and you lose with the team, as was experienced at the Cup Final in Birmingham earlier on in the year.
Over the course of the year though, multiple players have stepped up in matches to take control. As you may expect, team captain Cat Carr has done this on numerous occasions over the course of the season, as has her good friend Ta’Yani Clark. However, when both have been experiencing an off day, then players like Judit Fritz, Julia Koppl, Renee Busch and more recently, Jess Good, Vanessa Da Silva and Janice Monakana step up to take control of the situation and the game.
To win 100% of your games at any sporting level is a challenge. To win 100% of your games at a National level is one for the history books. The entire Suns squad, including the coaches and backroom staff, deserve huge applause for this monumental achievement and we hope that the public respond to this by supporting their local ‘National’ Champions.
• Sevenoaks now progress to the Play-Offs where they will hope to become the first team in WBBL history to win the trophy three-times, in a row. They face Durham Palatinates in a Bank Holiday Monday semi-final clash at the Sennocke Centre. The WBBL Play-Off final will be held on May 19th at the O2 in London.