READING Rockets (9-7) finally put their losing streak to bed last Sunday when they convincingly beat Manchester Magic (6-8) 97-62.

Rockets had lost their previous four outings, but an improved performance secured a much-needed win ahead of the visit of third-placed Team Northumbria (11-4) to Bohunt School on Saturday (5pm).

This will be the first match between the two teams this season with the visitors to Reading taking wins in both league games last season on their way to the NBL Division One title.

Rockets head coach Manuel Peña Garcés was pleased with his team’s win against Manchester last Sunday, but knows a bigger test awaits his troops with Team Northumbria having won eight out of their last nine games in league play.

The Spaniard said: “Last Sunday we put in another good performance against Manchester and got ourselves a much-needed win, but we definitely have a lot more to give and the test of this will be against Northumbria.

“Over the last few weeks we have played a lot better basketball and made a bigger commitment to what we are doing; the key for us now is to do this more and for longer periods and the players and coaching staff are working hard each practice to make this a habit and in turn produce better performances each time we play.”

He continued: “Northumbria are on a really good run at the moment with a National Trophy final ahead of them as well as a six-game winning streak so I think the game comes at a good time for us as we put ourselves up against one of the league's best.

“Coach Mark (Steutel, Team Northumbria head coach) has done a good job with his group again this year and they are very tough to play against and always come prepared, so we expect no different this time and hopefully will have learnt some valuable lessons after last season’s home game which was right before the play-offs.

“We have eight games to go and our goal is to play each game with better execution so we can try and win each battle we are in and prepare ourselves to firstly achieve a play-off spot, and secondly, be really competitive in the post-season. We are working hard and really excited for this!”

Rockets go into Saturday’s match-up with no new injury concerns, but will be without their Under 18 duo of Adrian Nosa Castillo and Iñigo Perez Baena who have an away game at the same time for their team.