Saturday sees Le Mans Sarthe Basket play their first game in Pro A since the departure of Erman Kunter. Le Mans Sarthe Basket had been under the stewardship of the former coach since 2014 and had won a Coupe de France de Basket (2016) and qualified for the playoff semi-finals twice under Kunter’s stewardship. Kunter’s former assistant Alexandre Menard has been named head coach in his stead.
Life after Erman Kunter for Le Mans Sarthe Basket
Menard was quick to tell reporters in his first press conference that he felt sorry for the former coach Erman Kunter. Four defeats in six matches leaves Le Mans Sarthe Basket outside the playoffs in tenth place and Menard knows that he will have a challenge on his hands to rectify that situation.
Menard, who was assistant to Erman Kunter has been with the club since 2008 and knows the club well. He remained loyal to Le Mans Sarthe Basket despite offers to become head coach of other teams in Pro A and Pro B and has now been rewarded with a chance to lead the club he loves.
He has already spoken of a clean slate for all the players following the departure of Kunter from Le Mans Sarthe Basket and that he is looking for contributions from them all in the coming weeks.
Alexandre Menard’s start at Le Mans Sarthe Basket
Menard’s first game as head coach will be against fourth-placed Nanterre at Le Mans Sarthe Basket’s Antares stadium, a game they will start as rank underdogs. Having lost by 27 points to Strasbourg at the weekend to cap a run of four defeats in six games it will be imperative for Menard to pick his team up in what will be another tough game.
Le Mans Sarthe Basketball then face ninth placed Hyeres-Toulon in the Coupe de France de Basket quarter-finals on Valentine’s Day before playing their first leg of their Basketball Champions League playoff match away to Sassari of Italy or CEZ Nymburk of the Czech Republic.
Alexandre Menard confirmed with reporters that they have to take every upcoming match as seriously as a cup final if Le Mans Sarthe Basket are to keep up their proud recent records.
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