Bradford Dragons' women returned after a three-year absence with a 59-38 home win at Bradford College Sports Hall against Deighton Diamonds in the Leeds & District League.

The Dragons, who trailed 4-2, closed out the first quarter with a 9-8 lead and then, led by Louise Hunte, Rhianna Mae Laing and Sammy Drake, they came out much stronger in the second quarter, pressuring the Diamonds into mistakes and carving out a 30-15 advantage by half-time.

Diamonds came out fighting in the second half but as Dragons continued to capitalise on the visitors' missed shots and slow defensive transition, Dragons picked up a much-deserved first win.

Mark Gunn, Bradford Dragons' women’s head coach, said: "Diamonds are always a tough team to play against and I respect their style of play, being very aggressive towards the ball on defence and continually trying to intercept passes, as well as playing an excellent passing game offensively.

"We performed well enough to control the game but with the players being new to the programme and just getting to know each other, our execution and finishing could have been much better.”

Gunn added: “After an active summer developing the female game in Bradford and taking a professional approach towards building a new programme, we managed to attract several West Yorkshire-based players to the club, including one of Bradford’s future Great Britain basketball stars, 14-year-old Rhianna Mae Laing (City of Sheffield Hatters Junior National League player and recently named in the England Under-16 women's initial squad for the 2012 international season).

"On top of this, we were lucky enough to have several experienced European players land on our doorstep wanting to play for the Dragons and they have all really complimented the squad with their desire to compete, adding much needed strength in depth for the long season ahead.”

Dragons line-up: Louise Hunte (14pts), Rhianna Mae Laing (14), Sammy Drake (14), Natalia Laing (5), Laura Moloney (4), Katie Vaines (4), Anna Sipitanou (2), Rachel Tunnacliffe (2), Claire Doherty, Esther Joyce, Keem Taylor-Hirst, Marta Wrzalik-Ciesla.

Bradford Dragons women’s Basketball next game is on Saturday away to Manchester Slam Dunkin Divas in the England Basketball Women’s National Founders Cup.

Dragons’ under-14s boys were crushed 144-4 at Newcastle Eagles but the under-18s played well to beat the same opposition 53-40.

* Bradford Dragons' women’s basketball sessions are for females aged 14+ and are on Tuesdays and Thursday (8.30pm-10pm) at Bradford College Sports Hall.

They compete in the Leeds & District Basketball League, as well as in the England Basketball Women’s National Founders Cup.

For more information, please contact Mark Gunn on 07582-100193 or search for Bradford Dragons Women’s Basketball on Facebook.