“I THOUGHT I was going to come here and have to eat crocodiles and snakes!”
Albury-Wodonga Bandits US import Jamar Briscoe expected the worst before arriving on the Border.
Instead, the 177-centimetre playmaker has been pleasantly surprised by what he has encountered.
Whether it’s the food — “it’s been great, I haven’t had anything I wouldn’t eat again” — or the fans or trying indoor cricket or Australian Rules football, the new-found Western Bulldogs fan has lapped up every moment of his antipodean experience.
“When I first got here I really didn’t know what to expect,” Briscoe said.
“And I always expect the worst but it’s been a great competition, night-in, night-out.
“The travel too, so you’ve got to have that professional mindset, to attack each game.
“I’m really trying to come into every day with an open mind.
“Even if it’s just meeting some fans, basketball, (Australian Rules) football, everything.
“Just having that clarity of mind to help me through this process.”
On the court, it has been an inconsistent start to Briscoe’s SEABL career but the former University of Pikeville star has settled into a groove of late, averaging more than 24 points per game over his past seven contests.
Now comfortably ensconced among the league’s leading scorers, Briscoe admitted there had been a settling-in period, not only for him but for his teammates too.
“So far, so good,” Briscoe said.
“It’s been a bit of an adjustment but I think I’ve been getting through it pretty well.
“Adjusting to everything but I’m really enjoying myself here.
“I think I’m much more comfortable now, adapting to our style of play.
“Just knowing what the team needs during the game and the right time to do that.
“It’s a good time to figure all that out before it was too late (in the season).”
The Border club plays host to the Knox Raiders tomorrow night and Briscoe said the Bandits wanted payback.
Knox claimed a comfortable 99-81 win over the Bandits in round 2, making the most of a third-quarter fade-out from the visitors at the State Basketball Centre.
But Briscoe said the Bandits’ recent two-game winning streak had lifted the mood around the team.
“We definitely owe them one,” Briscoe said.
“We felt like we should’ve beaten them last time but they outplayed us.
“But we owe them and that’s just the nature of the game.
“Momentum is great and there’s just a better feeling here now.
“It just makes it easier to get through those tough patches.
“It makes it easier to fight through that mental and physical fatigue.
“We just have to keep that good feeling going, we’re a good chance at home with a great crowd behind us.”
Tip-off at the Lauren Jackson Sports Centre is at 8pm, with the Lady Bandits’ game starting at 6pm.