The Melbourne Tigers have now won 3 in a row and are sitting at 3 wins and 3 losses, the exact same record as this time last year. The Tigers have a monster task ahead of them this week though when they take on the visiting Bendigo Braves.

Bendigo started the season red hot but hit a speed hump last week when they went down to the BA CoE side before bouncing back the next night to defeat Canberra. The return of Jeremy Kendle and the addition of Ray Turner has given Bendigo a boost after the 2016 Champs missed the playoffs last season.

Ray Turner (25.3ppg) and Jeremy Kendle (25ppg) combine for the majority of their points, while Ray is also 2nd in the league in rebounding at 12.7rpg including a monster night of 25 rebounds in Round 4 against the defending champs, the Mt. Gambier Pioneers.

Bendigo aren’t just Ray and Jeremy though, with Indiana Faithful also a handy player with the Illawarra Hawks in the NBL, leading the SEABL in steals with 18.

Melbourne welcomed back Dexter Kernich-Drew last week after missing a couple of weeks through injury in fashion as he exploded fir 32 points. With Dexter and Tom Wilson both firing and the work of the Bines brothers, as well as the defensive presence of Deng Acouth, should match up well with Bendigo.

Nick Abdicevic, no doubt reminded his players throughout the week that they can’t let their intensity slip and allow sides back into the game as they did in the 2nd half last week against Sandringham after leading by 20 points.

This should be an excellent battle and if the Tigers can pinch the victory they may find themselves in the Top 8 by the end of the weekend.

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