Walk-through Weekend

Sports Preview for Munich's clubs

Munich - The Bundesliga and the rest of Europe take a rest as countries continue their qualification for Euro 2012.  Half of the FC Bayern lineup are in Kaiserslautern as Germany host Kazakhstan.  TMT also previews Wales-England.

But there is local club action in other sports, here's your preview.

Send in the scrubs - Bayern Basketball will have to find motivation to play at a level they are used to when they host the Saar-Pfalz-Braves Saturday evening at the Olympia Eissportzentrum.  Tip off is at 19:30.

Dirk Bauermann's men clinched the championship of the ProA, the second division of the Basketball Bundesliga (BBL), last week after they defeated BG Karlsruhe 91-56.  And with no playoffs for which to prepare for, Bayern have to play out the string to complete the season.

"I don't know if we are going to play as intense as we did till now," said head coach Bauermann.  "This situation without playoffs at the end is completely new to me."

(Editor's note:  TMT's Gabriel Nounna will be tweeting from the match, follow the action @gabe_TMT_sports.)

A playoff has been played in the ProA to determine who gets promoted to the BBL, but not this year.  And to have the mission accomplished so early was not something the club expected.

"We had extremely good performances, we always were the dominating team," added Bauermann the team's 24-1 record and current 19-game winning streak.  "Everyone agrees that we deserved to win the league."

Perhaps now that the title is in the bag, a chance for the players to get some game action who have ridden the pine the whole season and see who stays?

Captain and German national Steffen Hamann agrees, "It's the first time for me that the last games of the season aren't important, so the other players will have the chance to play more minutes."

Along with building a team for the BBL, FC Bayern will be focused on upgrading an actual building.  On Tuesday, the Council on Education and Sport in Munich agreed unanimously to allow Bayern to take over the Rudi Sedlmayr Arena.  The home matches will move from cozy yet outdated 'Munich Square Garden' to a bigger, also outdated arena.  However, the costs for upgrading the arena, which has not been used for over two years, are due in mid-April.

Gearing up for the playoffs - Generali Haching have a goal for the weekend, and a win on Sunday at the Dieter Renz Hall in Bottrop against the RWE Volleys will accomplish it.

alt"We want to secure the second seed," explained head coach Mihai Paduretu the team's orders for the match.  A win, combined with a loss by SCC Berlin against current #1 seed VfB Friedsrichshafen, will clinch it for the Bavarians.

The key is to avoid Friedsrichshafen until the finals, thus the #2 seed is vital.  Haching have lost to them in the playoffs the last FIVE years.  However, if the CVV Domestic Cup final is any indication, this final may end different this year.  Haching defended their title by beating Friedsrichshafen and can take the confidence earned to turn around history.

RWE are no pushovers, they currently sit 5th in the Volleyball Bundesliga table.  However, Haching defeated the Volleys back on January 9th 3-0.

Haching have one more match on the road, April 2nd at CV Mitteldeutschland, and return home for the playoffs.

Simone Sperduto and Marco Menolfi contributed to this article.


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