DURHAM WILDCATS get their 2014-15 season under way on Friday night keen to build on last season where they made their first foray into the post-season play-offs.

Lee Davie’s side hit their season objective of reaching the BBL Play-Offs for the first time, by virtue of an eighth-place finish.

This was an improvement on the tenth spot of 2012-13 and 11th in their maiden campaign a year before, with much of the progression attributed to the newly-installed head coach, who took over from Dave Elderkin in the summer.

Wildcats tip off tonight at Sharks Sheffield before hosting new boys Leeds Force on Sunday at Newton Aycliffe – completing a rather Yorkshire-flavoured weekend.

And Davie is keen for his Wildcats to hit the ground running from the get-go.

“Sheffield are one of the best coached teams in the league,” said Davie. “They have a style of play that makes them very hard to beat, they want to slow the pace of the game down and grind it out in the half court. Normally the first team in their games to 70 points win.”

Davie was able to bring back influential guard and his assistant coach, Ralph Bucci, who will once again play a leading role for Durham. Joel Madourie returns too having had his previous campaign disrupted by injury, while Odiba Attah is a capable performer.

But there are a lot of changes too. Recent stateside graduates John Puk and Tom Knight will form Davie’s frontline, which will be supplied by guard Sam Martin, who spent time with Plymouth Raiders last season.

Wildcats will have to be wary of newboys Leeds on Sunday, but Davie will make sure his side know as much about the latest BBL franchise as possible come Sunday afternoon.

“We saw them in pre-season and got a good feel for them,” said Davie. “Now we've added in the remaining half of our team since we saw them last, we're looking forward to seeing them on Sunday in our home opener.”

Tip-off at Newton Aycliffe Leisure Centre is 4pm, adult tickets are £8, child tickets £6, and a family ticket is £5. Visit godurhamwildcats.com for more information.