Basketball: Doncaster-born star Rob Marsden targets GB call following France switch

Rob Marsden pictured in action for Manchester Giants. Picture: Jack Hinds.
Rob Marsden pictured in action for Manchester Giants. Picture: Jack Hinds.

Rob Marsden hopes his move to French club Cognac can be a stepping stone to a Great Britain call-up.

The 25-year-old forward shot to prominence with Manchester Giants last season, earning rave reviews during his first ever campaign in British basketball’s top flight.

Tickhill lad Marsden - a product of Danum Eagles - won the BBL Player of the Month award for March and was also named in the BBL Team of the Year.

After failing to agree terms with Manchester, Marsden is now preparing for a new challenge with Cognac in the French NM1 - the third tier of basketball across the channel.

And the 6’7” sharpshooter hopes the move will keep his blossoming career on an upward trajectory.

“Hopefully it goes well in France,” Marsden told the Free Press.

“The standard over there is very good. They say the third division is comparable to the BBL.

“My goal has always been to play at the best level that I can, so if it turns out to be a stepping stone then so be it.

“My aim is to be invited to a GB trial and to make the cut before I finish playing. Hopefully this move will help me achieve that.

“I’d like to think my best is yet to come,” he added.

“As long as I stay in shape, I think that will be the case.

“I had a good year at Manchester and picked up a lot of praise.

“If we could’ve come to the right terms I would’ve probably stayed because I would’ve liked to have stayed in England.

“I want to do the most I can for British basketball, but it wasn’t meant to be and I’m looking forward to a new challenge.”

Marsden, who has had spells playing in America and also for Leeds Carnegie, was back in Doncaster last month to attend Danum Eagles’ annual awards evening, reviving memories of his time at the club.

“I started at the Eagles when I was 14 and I absolutely loved my time there. Bob Martin [head coach] has been very influential in my life.

“I love coming back and seeing what it’s doing for the kids here now.

“There are some top players here. The under 18 team is probably the most talented team I’ve seen there.”