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THE Barracudas' American imports, Christopher Garnett (211-C-80, college: Indiana SE) and Chris Commons (204-F-84, college: USC Aiken), yesterday urged the fans to be patient saying they should give the team more time to gel and adapt to each other after the Brunei team's 76-59 loss to the Thailand Slammers on Saturday night in the Asean Basketball League (ABL) at the Nimibutr Indoor Stadium in Bangkok.

The loss puts the Bruneians at the bottom of the six-team table on a 0-2 record after their 62-71 opening defeat at the hands of the defending champions Philippine Patriots on Oct 3 at the Ynares Sports Arena at Pasig City in the Philippines.

Ozell Wells , the Barracudas head coach, had dubbed their American imports the most dominant in the league and they fared pretty well in Bangkok with Commons topscoring for the Bruneians in the encounter with 16 points and hauling down 11 rebounds for a double-double while Garnett had 14.

However, they were overshadowed by the 33-point performance by Slammers import Chris Kuete.

'It is tough to play on the road especially that we've only been together for such a short time. I'm still adjusting after getting here from the other side of the world and haven't had much sleep,' said Garnett, in an interview with The Brunei Times, yesterday.

'Those were tough losses and it's disheartening to see fans being negative towards the team. We have a great owner (Nadzaty Azma Azeez) in building this franchise and I hope that fans will be like the team's family and continue to back us up. We can't win them all, but all the players are working hard,' added the 30-year-old Garnett.

The 6ft 11in centre played the whole 40 minutes and scored 14 points. On a positive note, he held last season's best import, Jason Dixon, to five points and eight rebounds for the match.

'It is not all about points but we'll have to learn from this and hopefully we'll be able to get things going and bounce back against the Patriots in our first home game on Saturday,' said Garnett.

Commons echoed the sentiments of his compatriot and believed that the team would improve.

'It was a tough game (in Bangkok) as our opponents played well. We did manage to get it done in the first half but it just fell apart in the second,' said Commons.

'It is frustrating to lose the first two games but we have a long season ahead. We'll have to continue to practise hard and not give up. It is a learning process for our team and the standard has been set high,' he added.

'Hopefully we'll be able to turn things around against the Patriots,' continued the 25-year-old American.

The Barracudas went 14 for 27 from the freethrow line and made 19 turnovers compared to their opponents' eight.

Despite the disappointment in Bangkok, Wells believe that the Barracudas can turn things around.

'The sport is a game of mistakes and I'll still hold true to that they are the two most dominant imports in the league. We only have had two games so far. A journey of one million miles would require the first step and we have just set out on the road,' said Wells.

'We have to trust the process and we hope the hands would stand behind us instead of stabbing us,' concluded the Barracudas coach.

The Barracudas will play the Patriots at the Indoor Stadium of the Hassanal Bolkiah National Sports Complex in Berakas this Saturday at 8pm.The Brunei Times

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