Hakeem Olajuwon City of Birmingham Rockets Basketball Academy Season 2019-20 Report
The Rockets Academy team at Solihull 6th Form College completed an excellent season and were within touching distance of a shot at the league title when the season came to a close.
Head Coach, the legendary Peter Mintoft, has spent years in building his reputation as one of the best developers of player nationally. Being able to attract him to take on the role of working at the Academy was too good an opportunity to miss for Rockets MD, Rob Palmer, in October.
Coach Mintoft gave an overview of his first season, “ The group consisted of well-disciplined group of young men who had a fair degree of talent and a good level of motivation. There were 14 in total and we were able to offer daily training sessions and weekly games. The players had a good work ethic and strived hard to improve fitness, individual and team skills.
The College entered a team in AOC Sport competitions which comprises a home and away League and a Regional Tournament. At the time the league was discontinued on account of the Covid-19 outbreak the team held a 6&1 record and were gaining momentum moving towards the final phase of the regular season with the aspiration of becoming league champions.
In the West Midlands Regional tournament the team gave a really good account of themselves in defeating Worcester, Dudley, King Edwards Nuneaton and Halesowen before succumbing to the established Stoke College in the semi-final, so finishing in equal third position..
In line with Rockets philosophy of developing people several players volunteered to undertake officiating duties at the South Solihull Primary Schools tournament and did a very good job of refereeing the matches as well as offering words of encouragement to the young pupils.