READING Rockets face their first double-header of 2020 this weekend after kicking off the year with a fine 96-78 NBL Division One win against Westminster Warriors.

Alan Keane's men (10-4) will travel to the East Midlands on Saturday evening (7pm) to take on Nottingham Hoods (5-9), before returning to Reading to host Thames Valley Cavaliers (9-4) on Sunday afternoon (5pm) at Rivermead Leisure Complex.

After Sunday’s win – which keeps Rockets in the hunt for a top-four spot – Keane has identified areas he feels his team need to be better at and highlights these could well play a vital part of the outcome this weekend.

The Irishman said: "Another double-header weekend sees us travel back to Nottingham where we recently were successful in a cup fixture by the narrowest of margins.

"Nottingham is always a tough place to go and having played Hoods twice this season we are well aware of their strengths and the depth of talent they have. Somewhat similar to our Sunday game against Thames Valley, we will have to be at our best on the boards against both teams."

He continued: "Rebounding is something we are struggling with, especially without the influential AJ Carr and still awaiting a replacement. Our guards will need to take a lot of responsibility to win the battle of the rebounds in both games.

"Both teams do a great job of pushing the ball in transition and have individuals who can create their own shot from the perimeter. These back-to-back games will be won or lost on how well we can defend individually and whether we can limit them to one-and-done on offence."

Saturday’s match against Nottingham will be the third meeting between the two teams this term with Rockets holding a 2-0 series lead.

The Berkshire outfit won 98-85 in October at Rivermead, before securing a National Cup third round success 78-77 at the Wildcats arena.

Sunday’s encounter against the Cavaliers is the second of the season with Rockets recording their first NBL Division One victory against their opponents 108-93 at Uxbridge College, but the Thames Valley outfit have only lost three games since then and are also vying for a top-four finish.