Roy Owen, making his own path

Following a disappointing start to the season, that’s seen Bristol slip to a record of 1-5 in the Championship, we caught up with Flyers’ Roy Owen.

Speaking after his side’s 60-85 defeat at the hands of the unbeaten Leicester Riders, we began by asking Roy about the night’s result: “it was a really tough evening, especially having not played a game for 2 weeks. We had a solid game plan coming into tonight, but we weren’t able to execute. Their defence was solid and really put pressure on us and we just weren’t able to make the necessary adjustments.”

I feel like we’ve got a great team and a good bond, we just haven’t been able to put it all together for 40 minutes. It’s frustrating, but you’ve got to give credit to the Riders for playing a good game.”

Entering his 6th season at the club, Roy’s work extends beyond the court: “since joining the club I’ve worked in local colleges, schools and the community. It’s really important to find the right balance, so you’re able to go out and inspire future players and also interact with both the fans and volunteers in Bristol. Without the hard work of the volunteers, basketball in this country would grind to a halt. It’s so important to reward their dedication.”

Like many people, Roy began his basketball journey at a local weekly-session: “I played lots of sports growing up, but as soon as I found basketball it became an obsession. I worked my way through the various junior age-groups, in the National League, before stepping up to the BBL during my time as a student at Worcester University. I had an opportunity to join the Flyers, after my final year studying in Worcester, and I haven’t left since.”

“I really love the city of Bristol and Andreas [Kapoulas] is without doubt one of the best coaches in the league. We’ve kept a solid core of players, throughout my time here, which has really helped the team grow. That, as a British player who has only ever played domestically, has been really important to me.”

“I’ve probably made the journey sound a bit easier than it was. Without having a US college on my CV, I often felt overlooked by clubs in the early days. I remember my first season at Bristol, trying to get more experience; I was getting rejected from clubs like Reading and Derby, after having offering to play for them for free. Looking back, however, I’m happy I’ve made my own path and it shows you can stay here and still play at the highest level.”

Looking ahead to the future, Roy discussed the prospect of coaching: “I’d like to mix my passion for basketball and mentoring to continue to work with underprivileged children. Basketball is a life thing for me; I want to be involved in the game long after I hang up my playing boots. I don’t want to ever be away from it.”

“I want to help the younger guys, I wouldn’t want Andreas’ job though,” Roy concluded with a smile.

Bristol continue their BBL campaign with a trip to Newcastle at 7:30PM, November 11th.

Image: P.Davies