THE body of work constructed by Kieron Achara during a long and distinguished career has already ensured his place in the British

basketball pantheon. On top of his 105 international caps prior to his international retirement last year, many as Great Britain’s captain and totem, he also boasts Olympic appearances with multiple European Championships, as well as having the respect of his peers.

Yet at 35, his CV is marred by an inglorious void. Home and abroad, he has not lifted a trophy since emerging from a junior career that made the Stirling-born forward Scotland’s youngest debutant. Time, he acknowledges, is running out rapidly. When Glasgow Rocks face London Lions in today’s BBL Cup final in Birmingham, this might be a last chance to obtain a winner’s medal.

History has been similarly unkind to his club who have appeared in eight major finals since lifting the BBL

play-off title in 2003 but lost them all. Motivation is not in short supply.

“People always talk about winning trophies,” Achara admits. “To win something and achieve something for Glasgow would be huge. This is going to be our ninth final and we owe the fans and the city.

It would mean a lot to lift that cup.”

There is no burden of expectation. Perhaps the Rocks can profit from an assault on the Lions by stealth. London, top of the domestic league, are deservedly favourites. Glasgow, marooned in 10th, are certainly outsiders. Yet since mid-November, no top-tier team has picked up more victories. They have been beneficiaries of a soft schedule, yet Friday’s 101-81 annihilation of BBL champions Leicester Riders left Darryl Wood’s men sensing a conclusion to the lengthy wait for silverware might be accomplished.

“Finals are funny things,” Achara says. “It is about who brings it on the day. We have confidence in ourselves. We’ve won eight of our last 10 games. We put 100 points on Leicester. That’s an impressive feat. We feel comfortable in our own skin now. And we’re ready to go.”

Plus, he adds: “There’s a real sense of urgency. We know we dug ourselves into a massive hole in the league. But that’s been turned around now. People understand their roles and I think we’re a threat for anyone, including London.”

Meanwhile, in the women’s BBL Cup final, Sheffield Hatters meet unbeaten Sevenoaks Suns.

Yesterday, Caledonia Pride opened up the group stages of the WBBL

Trophy with a 78-64 win over Newcastle Eagles. Hannah Robb and Hansine Marshall scored 14 points apiece with the Scots pulling away for good at Oriam in the third period to end a run of three straight defeats.