Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Monty Mosher on the Capers trip to China

Charters: It was more about culture and education than basketball

BY MONTY MOSHER The Chronicle Herald

The record will show a win and two losses on the Cape Breton Capers mostrecent road trip. But when the road trip is to China, the wins and losses don’t matter so much. Jim Charters and his 7-0 Capers spent a week in the Beijing area, except fora day trip to the Great Wall, building on some contacts already developed between CBU and Chinese colleges, universities, high schools and other institutions. The trip was dubbed East meets East. The team literally rolled back into Sydney on Tuesday afternoon with th esecond half of the conference schedule set to begin on Saturday night at alhousie. "The trip was phenomenal," said Charters, trying in vain to adjust to a12-hour time difference. "The people of China, the people who were looking after us — we got treated better than we ever could have expected. "We saw all the tourist spots, but we got to intermingle with a lot of the students and university officials. It was without a doubt the best basketball trip I’ve ever been on and I think the kids would agree." He said basketball was only a small part of the journey. "It was really the cultural and educational experience," he said. "China sometimes gets a negative stereotype with the communist regime, but we felt totally safe at all times and totally free. It was just an amazing experience for us. It couldn’t have been better with how we were treated as a group." There was one glitch. The three Capers from the Baltimore area — Paris Carter, Jimmy Dorsey and Tavon Nelson — got snowed in and were unable to get to Toronto to connect with the rest of the team. On the court, the Capers played two teams of university players and an under-22 club team. They opened with an 86-74 loss to Renmin University and fell 73-69 to the NDRC all-stars, a team of university players assembled to represent the organization hosting Cape Breton’s visit. Cape Breton finished with a 73-59 win over Beijing Shougang all-stars, the youth affiliate of a Beijing pro team. He said the Chinese players were big. "Every team we played had two guys six-foot-10 or better," Charters said."They were bigger than us at every position. "I think their basketball is influenced quite heavily by the NBA. A lot of the sets you see are from the teams you see in the NBA. You can see both the international and the North American game in their style." Charters said he doesn’t expect the CIS 10th-ranked Capers to have much in the tank this weekend for the Tigers on Saturday and Sunday. "We won’t be ready to play this weekend, but I wouldn’t pass up that trip (to China) for anything," he said. "We haven’t practised. We’ll just give it our best shot this weekend."

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