|December 8, 2019||1:00 pm||WBBL Cup||2019-20|
Super skipper Giulia Simioni is adamant a raft of awards won’t distract Newcastle Eagles WBBL from the bigger picture.
The Swiss star made this week’s All Star five for the first time this season following a standout display against Cardiff.
Team-mate Georgia Ohrdorf went on to lift the Molten WBBL Player of the Month award for November.
And Newcastle coach Chris Bunten capped an historic week for the black and whites when he was named Coach of the Month.
“I’m not sure whether this week will finally make other teams in the league sit up and take notice,” said Simioni ahead of tomorrow’s WBBL Cup quarter-final against Manchester Mystics.
“I don’t really care about that. We are just focusing on our own game and we’ll keep going as hard as we can.”
Simioni knows better than most the value of in-form Aussie Ohrdorf and experienced playcaller Bunten.
But she added: “I don’t think anyone realises just how good a player Georgia really is.
“She’s been so important to us all season and I think other teams are starting to wake up to the fact that she’s one to watch.
“All of her points come from hard work and she has to fight for everything.
“It’s tough for her to make the impact that she does as part of such a talented roster and that makes her contribution even more impressive.”
Bunten led his side to four straight wins in November and appears to have fashioned another team capable of challenging for silverware.
“Chris is giving the players enough freedom to express themselves and at the same time he’s putting in a position to use our collective skills effectively,” added Simioni.
“He’s been leading us in the right way and that shows in the results throughout November.”
Simioni heads into tomorrow’s Eagles Community Arena clash against Manchester full of confidence following last weekend’s double double in Cardiff.
And she added: “I’m really enjoying my basketball right now.
“It’s fun to be part of such a talented team and to be around players who are so keen to share the ball.
“If you play Newcastle right now I don’t know how you decide which player to defend.
“We have so many options and it must be difficult to focus on any one player as an offensive threat.”
The Eagles blew away the Mystics on the back of a phenomenal final quarter in Manchester last month.
And Bunten’s side are favourites to seal a spot in the semi-finals on current form.
But Simioni added: “We just need make sure we start the game better.
“It was a tight game for three quarters but we can’t wait until the final period to go on a run again.”
Newcastle host the Mystics from 1pm with tickets available in advance for just £5 or on the door.