Martin Malnieks will ask for a new deal at Glasgow Rocks after relishing his surprise opportunity to play in the British Basketball League this season, writes Mark Woods.
The Latvian forward won a place with the Kelvin Hall side last summer through the club’s trials. With Sterling Davis’ men beset by injuries – and with captain EJ Harrison not due to return from compassionate leave until next week – Malnieks will expect an enlarged role against Plymouth Raiders tomorrow. He admits, though, his taste of the professional game has made him more determined to extend his stay.
“Of course it’s more fun when you’re playing,” he said. “But I’ve enjoyed the season. In the beginning, I was hoping I’d get more court time but I am a rookie this year. Everyone has to go through this. So you get to the end and see about next season.”
Playing basketball was not on the 24-year-old’s agenda when he landed on a working holiday. “I thought it would be an interesting place, to try something new,” he said. “I was just working for a few months, enjoying Scotland, but then the trials came up.”
There have been enough glimpses of talent for Davis to hint at a fresh contract. If there is a next season, Malnieks hopes for better fortune than the Rocks have enjoyed this term.
“We know we can beat anyone when we have a full team but it seems like we’ve only all been together three times all season,” he said. “So we’ll have to pull together.”