Shanice Beckford-Norton excited for EuroCup campaign

Shanice Beckford-Norton can't wait to be part of Lions women's European campaign as they face Spa Gran Canaria on Thursday.

Lions host the Spanish side in the first leg of the FIBA EuroCup qualifying round at Crystal Palace.

"I'm vey excited to be playing in Europe, and I hope we get a big crowd to watch us in action" said the London-born guard. "I know the Lions organisation is working hard to get people to support us and hopefully there will be a great atmosphere as we try to qualify for the group stage."

Beckford-Norton knows what to expect from the visiting side: "we've watched them on tape, they have some strong guards and they move the ball well. But we need to make sure we play our game, work on our strengths and work on our help-side rotation. We need to talk to each other on defence, and that's something we've been working on it practice and during the friendlies.

"We need to leave everything on the floor, and coach is always saying that regardless of how many minutes you get, you should always be ready to play."

Lions wrapped up pre-season with a 45-point win at Nottingham Wildcats on Friday evening before playing Lions men's third team on Sunday, and Beckford-Norton believes the games were beneficial for her side: "Friday was good for us to be back on the court and they gave us a good test, while the game against the boys went really well. They had the edge with their physicality, they moved the ball well and got to the rim. It was a great practice for us and should help us ahead of Thursday's game."

The winner of the two-leg tie progresses to the group stage of the competition, and the big game tips-off at 7.30pm on Thursday with tickets available at EventBrite.