Young guns named to Hoopsfix rosters

Hoopsfix has revealed the rosters for the 2020 Hoopsfix All-Star Classic, despite its cancellation due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The annual event – supported by Nike and 5or6 – would have brought together the top male and female junior players of their generation to play in three All-Star games across two days.

Congratulations to our pathway players Hannah Dawson, Molly James, Alex Baker, Victor Ndoukou, Giovanni Emejuru, Blaize Sagna, Greg Durand and Chester Morrell who were all named in the rosters.

The five previous events have all sold out in advance and another capacity crowd was anticipated in Brixton for the 2020 edition, which was originally scheduled for June before its cancellation.

“Though we are absolutely gutted to have had to cancel the event this year, we felt announcing the selected players is a small gesture to show recognition of those who would have been suiting up,” said Sam Neter, owner of Hoopsfix.

“Despite the event not happening, we will class those selected this year as alumni as with every other year, and they will be listed on the new website – launching soon – with player profiles.

“Congratulations to all those selected, and massive respect to all the clubs, coaches and people who contributed to their development. We look forward to following their progress and development in the coming years.”

With countless national titles and a wealth of junior international experience between them, the rosters represent a glimpse into the future of British basketball and include both domestic and foreign-based players.

The full selections for each game are as follows with name, height, position, and their 2019-20 programme as selections were based on performances up until the end of last season.

Class of 2020 Rosters

Team Black

David Chive, 6’0”, Guard, John Madejski Academy
Chris Feeney, 6’2″, Guard, Barking Abbey
Bradley Kaboza, 6’2″, Guard, Myerscough
Charlie Brown, 6’3″, Guard, Derby
Lewis McGlasson, 6’4″, Guard, Myerscough
Asher Ndah, 6’4″, Guard, John Madejski Academy
Eljay Morris, 6’4″, Guard/Forward, Governor’s Academy (USA)
Richard Amaefule, 6’9″, Forward, Bishop Lynch  (USA)
Sanmi Fajana, 6’8″, Forward, Myerscough
Amari Williams, 6’10”, Forward/Centre, Myerscough
Josh Ogundele, 6’11”, Forward/Centre, Worcester Academy  (USA)
Matt Marsh, 7’0”, Forward/Centre, FC Barcelona (Spain)

Team White

Blaize Sagna, 6’2″, Guard, Charnwood
Louis Norton, 5’10”, Guard, Barking Abbey
Ben Winter, 6’3″, Guard, Ipswich
Chester Morrell, 6’2″, Guard, Canterbury
Taiga Forster, 6’1″, Guard, Itchen
Greg Durand, 6’5″, Guard, Charnwood
Vasja Pandza, 6’8”, Guard, The Hotchkiss School (USA)
Tomiwa Sulaiman, 6’6” Forward, West Nottingham Academy  (USA)
Tom Sowoolu, 6’8″, Forward, Barking Abbey
Eduardo Andre, 6’10”, Forward, AZ Compass Prep School (USA)
Sam Chigbo, 6’11”, Forward/Centre, Myerscough
Theo Hughes, 7’0″, Centre, Barking Abbey

Underclassmen Rosters

Team Black

Cameron Hildreth, 6’5″, Guard, Holy Trinity
Latrell Maitland, 6’1″, Guard, John Madejski Academy
Elijah Walsh, 6’4”, Guard, Queen Ethelburga’s
Jacob Morgan, 6’0″, Guard, Ipswich
Michael Belle, 6’6″, Guard, Strasbourg (France)
Sam Alajiki, 6’7″, Guard, Beckley Prep (USA)
Flynn Boardman-Raffet, 6’4″, Guard/Forward, Barking Abbey
Blake Bowman, 6’5″, Guard/Forward, Derby Trailblazers
Franklin Agu, 6’6″, Forward, Myerscough
Sam Grant, 6’8″, Forward, John Madejski Academy
Josh Ijeh, 6’8″, Forward, BMET James Watt College
Ethan Price, 6’10”, Forward, Ipswich

Team White

Quinn Ellis, 6’3″, Guard, Orlandina (Italy)
Alex Distras, 6’0″, Guard, Haringey
Josh Uduje, 6’6″, Guard, Knox School (USA)
Owen Young, 6’4″, Guard, Haringey
Wakeem Richardson, 6’3″, Guard, BMET James Watt College
Veron Eze, 6’4″, Guard, Barking Abbey
Jeremy Sochan, 6’8″, Forward, La Lumiere (USA)
Moses Gordon, 6’6″, Forward, New City
Abiodun Adedo, 6’5″, Forward, St Charles
Giovanni Emejuru, 6’10”, Forward, Charnwood
Victor Ndoukou, 6’8″, Forward, Charnwood
Ndwedo Newbury, 6’8”, Forward, Haringey

Under-19 Women Rosters

Team Black

Ella Doherty, 5’11”, Guard, Caledonia Pride
Jade Mbam, 5’7″, Guard, Manchester Mystics
Mariam Olawoyin, 5’5″, Guard, Nottingham
Molly James, 5’9″, Guard, Charnwood
Tamara Fournillier Onadeko, 5’10”, Guard, Barking Abbey
Hannah Dawson, 5’10”, Guard/Forward, Charnwood
Rebecca Dwomoh, 5’10”, Guard/Forward, Femeni Maresm (Spain)
Esther Little, 6’2″, Guard/Forward, Copleston
Jannike Marshall, 6’0″, Forward, Caledonia Pride
MJ Sarkodee-Adoo, 6’2″, Forward, City of London Academy
Molly Lavin, 6’2″, Forward, Richmond Knights
Louise Rouse, 6’2″, Forward, Oaklands
Isimenme Ozzy-Momodu, 6’1″, Centre, City of London Academy

Team White

Amelia Sandie, 5’7″, Guard, City of London Academy
Abbey Whitehouse, 5’9″, Guard, Sheffield
Asha Andrews, 5’7″, Guard, Sevenoaks Suns
Charlotte Redhead, 5’7″, Guard, Copleston
Ella Pearson, 5’10”, Guard/Forward, Copleston
Simona Henshaw, 5’10”, Forward, City of London Academy
Shaniya Rose, 6’0″, Forward, Nottingham Wildcats
Susannah Rafiu, 6’1″, Forward, Copleston
Pollyanna Storie, 6’2″, Forward, Caledonia Pride
Adaobi Nebuwa, 5’10”, Forward, City of London Academy
Cameron Taylor-Willis, 6’0″, Forward, Copleston
Emma Imevbore, 6’4″, Centre, London Thunder
Alex Baker, 6’2″, Centre, Charnwood

Club statement: COVID-19

This morning we received formal confirmation which shows that several members of the Riders programme have tested positive for COVID-19.

Leicester Riders’ priority is the health and well-being of its players and staff throughout its pathway programme.

The members who have tested positive, and people living in the same proximity, will now strictly follow government self-isolation guidelines.

We also have a wider care and responsibility to the players and staff from opposing teams. Therefore, with an abundance of caution, we have informed the BBL and Basketball England, and have cancelled the behind closed doors pre-season away Riders game against Bristol Flyers, scheduled for Friday night, and this weekend’s games for Loughborough Riders and Charnwood Riders.

Fixtures Confirmed as Lynch Trophy Begins Saturday

The group stage of the inaugural Lynch Trophy has been announced and there will be 24 high-quality games for British basketball fans to watch online over three weekends.

 The competition sees all 14 NBL Division One clubs, together with invited academy sides Myerscough and Charnwood, competing in four regional groups of four. Playing each other once, the top two sides in each group will progress to the quarter-finals.

 All games in the group stage will be played in central bubbles and will be livestreamed.

 “We’re delighted to introduce the Lynch Trophy at part of our campaign to improve the profile of Division One,” said Loughborough Riders’ MD Russell Levenson, who represents the top-flight clubs on the Basketball England working group along with Thames Valley Cavaliers’ Robert Banks and Dave Ryan of Oaklands Wolves.

 “Our partnership with L Lynch is exciting for us and we hope that the competition will help get basketball back in front of supporters after the problems Covid-19 has caused.”

Group one will be hosted by Solent Kestrels at their impressive new venue and will see the all-conquering Division One and National Cup champions joined by old rivals Worthing Thunder along with BA London Lions and division new-boys Essex Rebels.

Oaklands Wolves have a top-flight team for the first time following their merger with one of the most famous names in the British games, Leopards, and the St Albans-based side will host Group Two. They will be joined by neighbours Hemel Storm along with old rivals Reading Rockets and Thames Valley Cavaliers.

Midlands pride is on the line in Group Three as Loughborough Riders host Nottingham Hoods and Leicester Warriors along with Charnwood who will look to cause an upset.

Myerscough will stage Group Four, and they will be joined by Division Two champions Newcastle, Bradford Dragons and Derby Trailblazers.

The group stages will be played over three weekends, the 10/11, 17/18 and 24/25 October.

  • Oct 10th – 3.45pm – Charnwood College Riders vs Leicester Warriors
  • Oct 17th – 3.45pm – Charnwood College Riders vs Nottingham Hoods
  • Oct 24th – 6.45pm – Charnwood College Riders vs Loughborough Riders

Basketball returns with the National Lynch Trophy

The 2020/21 basketball season will tip-off on October 10 with a new piece of silverware on offer for teams in NBL Division One following the creation of the Lynch Trophy.

The competition sees all 14 of the Basketball England NBL Division One clubs, with invited academy sides Myerscough and Charnwood, competing in four regional groups of four.

The group stages will be played over three weekends, the 10/11, 17/18 and 24/25 October, and will be used as trial events for the coming season. The games will provide controlled windows for clubs, officials, coaches and players to understand the ‘new normal’ and how games will need to be conducted before NBL Division One commences on October 31/November 1.

Playing each other once, the top two sides in each group will progress to the quarter-finals. All games in the group stage will be played in four central bubbles and will be livestreamed.

Gail Richards, Basketball England’s Senior Delivery Manager said: “We are really pleased to support and work together with NBL1 clubs to form this pre-season event.

“We are coming through a difficult time for the sport and we are confident the event will help us understand some of the challenges faced by players, clubs and officials heading into the new season, while giving the teams the opportunity for some competitive action.”

Rob Lynch, Director L Lynch Plant Hire & Haulage, said: “We’re really looking forward to working with the NBL clubs as the National Lynch Trophy 2020/21 commences and we help restart professional basketball in England.

 “It’s great to be involved in a national competition with clubs stretching from Newcastle, to the south coast where we expect Worthing and Solent to challenge, and with Hemel Storm and Oaklands Wolves on our doorstep. We know there will be some entertaining games. The Lynch Trophy 2020/21 is an exciting new tournament and we’re excited to play a part.”

Hemel Hempstead MP Sir Mike Penning, who is also the Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group for basketball, and represents the constituency where Lynch are based: “I am delighted to see the return of another national competition for the NBL1 teams and also the support of a commercial partner in Lynch. This new competition speaks to the APPG vision of a stronger and more commercially viable framework for semi-professional basketball in this country.”

Follow the Lynch Trophy on Twitter @LynchTrophy and Instagram @LLynchTrophy

About L Lynch Plant Hire & HaulageWith an expansive fleet of modern plant and equipment, Lynch Plant Hire & Haulage provides operated, self-drive and contract hire plant to a variety of sectors within the construction arena. Contracts within the civil engineering, rail engineering, public utilities, ground works, highways maintenance, demolition and winter maintenance sectors all offer Lynch the opportunity to build a wide portfolio of skills within a variety of areas.

Katie Januszewska joins the Leicester Riders

Katie Januszewska has joined Charnwood College and will play in the WBBL and WEABL this upcoming season. 

The 5’11 guard previously played for the Derby Trailblazers division 2 and helped the U16s make an appearance at the junior final fours. Last season, the scoring machine averaged 30 points per game with a monster triple-double against Sheffield Hatters – 50 points, 16 rebounds and 11 assists.

 “I am excited to join the Riders this season,” commented Katie. “This is a great opportunity for me to learn and work alongside such talented players.”

“The team has been hugely welcoming and supportive and are always happy to share their knowledge with me which I appreciate.”

Januszewska has also represented both England at the u15’s Copenhagen invitational tournament and Great Britain at the 2019 FIBA European Championship.

WBBL Head Coach Jesper Sundberg commented: “it’s been a pleasure working with KJ these first weeks of preseason. She has already shown a desire to compete with our more experienced players.”

“I’m extremely excited to see how she can develop and improve in a senior environment.”

Katie is now the 12th and the youngest player announced by the Riders for the WBBL 2020-21 season. 

Alex Baker Commits to Lynn University

Class of 2020 Charnwood College student Alex Baker has committed to Lynn University where she will play her college basketball next season. We spoke to Alex on her time at Charnwood College and her decision join the Lynn University next season.

How’s your time at Charnwood?

Deciding to go to Charnwood was a very big decision for me. To move away from home at a young age is never easy but it was the best decision I ever made and would do it all over again. These past two years have been such an experience that I’m going to miss deeply but I’m going onto my next journey in the states all thanks to Charnwood, Krumesh and all the other players and coaches. Charnwood has turned into my family, you live with them, play with them, go to school with them and experience it all together. I am so grateful for the people I have met and was able to build friendships and relationships with from my time at Charnwood and I’ll never forget it.

What advice would you give to the next crop of girls coming through at Charnwood College?

Advice I would give is that it is not easy, and thats ok. It’s not supposed to be easy, its supposed to be challenging. If it was easy everyone would be doing it. You need to try your very best and show why you are different and deserve to be playing at this standard. And if you don’t get the game time or playing time that you like or think you deserve, then ask yourself why. If something isn’t going well, try to do something else rather than just dropping your head. Its all about effort and hustle, everything else will come later.

Why did you choose Lynn University?

I decided to commit to Lynn University in Florida as it was the best fit for me. Ever since I started playing its never been all about basketball. Its been about other aspects like my education and happiness. So I felt that Lynn ticked all these boxes for me. I visited Lynn and other schools so I had a good comparison and fell in Love with Lynn as well as having a great gut feeling that I wanted to spend the next 4 years of my journey here.

Anyone you would like to thank whilst on this Journey?

I could thank so many people for helping me or inspiring me up to this point. Too many to mention in fact but any coach that I was lucky enough to be coached by is a great start. From the beginning of my journey at Brighton Cougars when Hugh Sandie saw potential in me, to my next step at SeveonOaks with Len Busch and Richard Surrey who developed me as a player and person, then finally to Charnwood with Krumesh Patel, Oli Parr and Alex Hayley. Also all my GB coaches, assistant coaches and physios. It really wouldn’t have been possible without any of them so I want to thank them from the bottom of my heart for getting me this far. I won’t forget it. And lastly all the players I’ve had the privilege of playing with or even against, helping me develop my game everyday.

Charnwood’s Emejuru gets overseas experience at Euroleague Adidas Next Generation Tournament

Giovanni took part in the Euroleage Adidas Next Generation Tournament in Kaunas, Lithuania against some of the best teams in Europe. Giovanni has only been playing 3 years and is now competing against NBA prospects. The Team Finished 5th out of 8 teams.

Giovanni believes that his experience in Lithuania will only help him develop more as a player. “I didn’t really know what to expect because I haven’t really been to a tournament outside of the uk. I found it to be a once in a lifetime experience that will help me grow as a basketball player. It was a different playing style I found it to be alot quicker and their offences flowed at a high pace with short actions.”

“The level of competition was extremely high most teams had NBA prospects and playing against that level of competition is challenging but it will only improve me as a basketball player.”

Head Coach James Vear was impressed with what he saw from Giovanni despite him not being with the team long. “A lot of credit must go to Will on the job he is doing with Gio in the short term he has been with Charnwood, Gio did incredibly well at the Tournament both on the offensive and defensive end. It isn’t easy coming in and playing with the team with only a few practices before we left for the tournament, he is a great prospect and a great kid”.

Charnwood College Head Coach Will Maynard has been impressed with Giovanni’s improvement since joining the Programme. “Giovanni has excelled in the past couple of months being with us. Extremely proud how he represented himself on and off the court. From going to playing u15s basketball last year to competing at the biggest stage in europe is credit to his hard work and dedication.”

Game 1 vs Juventut Badalona

Favourites to win tournament from sources

Huge upset

70-67 win

21 minutes 7 points 4 rebs

Game 2 vs Rytas Vilnius

Winners of the tournament

89-37 loss

20 mins 5 points 5 rebounds 3 assist 2 steals

Charnwood College Riders Head to Portugal with Erasmus+

Charnwood College Riders travel overseas today to begins a 2-week educational trip in Portugal made possible by Erasmus+.

The trip will consist of a mix of on and off the court development for the players. The basketball development will open players eyes to local coaching and competition, furthering their understanding of different cultures of the game.

The trip will feature 27 students and 5 staff over the two week period, with fixtures lined up against local opposition in the Sangalhos – Anadia region of Portugal as well as day trips to local cities and historical sites.

Head of the Academy, Krumesh Patel, is looking forward to the trip.

“The time away is an opportunity to gain some European exposure for the students. On the court the teams will be able to learn from local coaches and teams in a way different to the leagues we play in in the UK. 

“This holiday period allows the group to spend some quality time together and not only gain basketball experience but learn about a new culture away from the game with some excellent experiences being lined up by our hosts. 

The players and staff seem really excited and I think it will be a trip they will remember!” 

Be sure to follow @CharnwoodBball on social media for an insight to the trip.