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[28 NOV 98] COVENTRY CRUSADERS NEWS
Crusaders Strike Deal With Rank
 

Dip Donaldson, Coventry CrusadersCoventry Crusaders basketball club have struck a deal with Rank Entertainment to play their home games at the new arena on the former GPT site in Coventry city centre.

The deal still has to be formally signed but Crusaders owner Dip Donaldson is confident it will go through allowing the club to move to the new arena during next season.

The deal also opens the way for Coventry Rugby Club to move to the Butts Stadium along with a basketball development centre. Had Donaldson and Rank failed to come up with a deal, Crusaders were planning to take the whole of the Butts, leaving the Rugby Club homeless when they have to vacate their Coundon Road ground which has been sold for housing.

Donaldson said:

"We have agreed the deal with Rank but have not signed. I am very confident that everything will go through.

"We will play at the new arena and can gear up to the possibility of Budweiser League basketball in the future. We will want to become established at the arena before trying for the Budweiser because it takes a lot of money and we need to be consolidated in our new home.

"It means we will get more people coming to watch while Rank know that we will pull people in for them.

"It is also the best deal for the rugby club who can look to the Butts for their new home. It really shows that when Coventry City Council put their muscle behind something than they can make it happen.

"They are keen for the rugby club to move to the Butts and this was the best way for it to happen."

A formal announcement of the deal is expected next month.
   

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CWN / Sport / Basketball / Coventry Crusaders / 28 Nov 98

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