Riders team up with On Court

Leicester Riders are thrilled to announce they have formed a partnership with OnCourt, the exclusive distributor in the UK of Mega Slam Hoops, adjustable basketball hoops and systems of the highest quality.

“We are really happy to be teaming up with OnCourt and Mega Slam Hoops. They produce quality products and our first project with them is our hoop at our facility for our academy players at Field House.” Commented Riders MD Russell Levenston.

“We are an elite programme and we would recommend Mega Slam products to all our friends in the basketball community. Through the Riders we can offer our partners a discount to their products.”

Using the link https://oncourt.online/uk/riders/ , our friends and partners throughout the basketball community receive  5% discount.

Nathan Austin of On Court commented: “OnCourt.Online is the first truly specialist Basketball court and component supplier in the UK. If you want to go all the way, then investing in the tools to do so means there’s nothing in the way but your own convictions. Working out on a Mega Slam Hoop will calibrate your game for competition so that every minute spent training is a direct investment in your potential”. 

“As the exclusive UK distributor of Mega Slam Hoops, OnCourt.Online recognise the leadership and vision of a championship team like Leicester Riders, which is why we’re extremely proud to be able to play our part in supporting the growth and development of Basketball here in the UK”. 

L Lynch Trophy Preview : Riders Vs Warriors

Charnwood College Riders begin their L Lynch Trophy campaign by hosting NBL D1 side Leicester Warriors on Saturday 18th September with a 3pm tip off. 

The last time these two sides met was in the same competition where Riders came away with a comfortable 83-67 win. Riders have some exciting players that will be looking to have a positive impact on the game, Dan Hadley, Ceejay Hanson, Chris Yapo and first year Oscar Curran to name a few. Pre-season preparations for the Riders saw them defeat Edinburgh City Kings with a 91-69 victory. 

Leicester Warriors an experienced D1 side will certainly be looking to get revenge on the young Riders team. Warriors finished 12th place last season in D1 will once again be coached by Karl Brown who will be hoping to build on from last season. 

Head Coach Will Maynard commented “Really exciting times to have the opportunity to compete in the Lynch Trophy again this year. We have a new and young group and it’s going to be a positive challenge for us. The next three games will be great preparation for our campaign in Division 2 this year.” 

Charnwood College Riders will also face Nottingham Hoods and Loughborough Riders in the group stages of the L Lynch Trophy. 

Two home victories against Sheffield

Charnwood WEABL and EABL were both victorious against Sheffield College.

WEABL

The Riders WEABL claimed an 82-72 win. The home team had a slow start as Sheffield took a four-point lead to end the first quarter. Charnwood slowly clawed their way back and gathered momentum for a 10-0 run. Molly James and Katie Januszewska had 18 points combined in the second quarter to help put the Riders on top. In the third, a big push from Sheffield and 11 points from Ella Whitehouse cut the lead to five. However, Charnwood were able to maintain control in the final quarter and get the home win. 

Charnwood WEABL was led by Katie Januszewska’s 26 points, whilst Sheffield’s sisterly duo, Abbey and Ella Whitehouse, had 18 and 15 a piece. 

Scorers

Charnwood: Januszewska 26, James 16, Bird 12, Davies, 9, Shaw 7, Lambert 7, K.Cox 2, Harry 2, B.Cox 1. 

Sheffield: A. Whitehouse 18, E. Whitehouse 15, Oliver 12, Jakonya 7, Roberts 7, Borg 6, Graham 5, Chowdary 2. 

EABL

The Riders EABL finished the game with a 92-81 win. Out the gate, both teams were aggressive with Sheffield staying close on the scoreboard. Big statements dunks from both Victor Ndoukou and Nathan Conaty erupted the Charnwood bench, but then Sheffield’s Hensy Sako responded with two dunks of his own.  Midway in the third quarter, Charnwood focused on their execution and was able to start the fourth with a 13-point lead and finish the game with a win. 

Victor led the Riders with a double-double, 22 points and 11 rebounds,  and Louie Jordan hit five three’s to finish up with 18 points. Whereas, Sheffield was led by Hensy Sako’s 32 points, 12 rebounds and six steals.

Scorers

Charnwood: Ndoukou 22, Jordan 18, Gudza 17, Hanson 14, Conaty 8, Woog 8, Perry 4, Campbell 1. 

Sheffield: Sako 32, Mcgrail 14, Ibrahim 14, Kom 11, Jones 8, Ali 2. 

Greg Wild signs first professional contract

Charnwood Academy graduate Greg Wild has signed his first professional contract with Leicester Riders.

Wild, who featured in both the BBL roster for Leicester and NBL roster for Loughborough last term, has committed his future to the programme signing a four-year contract.

“It’s a surreal feeling signing my first professional contract with such a decorated club with a lot of history and great success,” commented Greg.

“I am grateful for the opportunities that have led me to this point in my playing career and I’m ready to get to work with the guys ahead of next year.” 

“I can’t wait to get back out there and show everyone what I’m capable of, I want to keep getting better everyday.”

“I am blessed for the opportunity to study at Loughborough University through Loughborough College and thankful for the partnership between Riders and Loughborough to allow me to get my degree alongside playing basketball at a high level.”

Whilst on the Riders roster, Greg will study for a degree and be eligible to represent Loughborough in both the NBL and BUCS competitions.

“It’s fantastic for us to secure the services of such a talent like Greg,” commented Riders MD Russell Levenston.

“It’s pretty special for us to be able to offer a player from our academy programme a first professional contract. It’s a trend we are seeing more and more, and it shows any young basketball players that they don’t necessarily need to head to a US college to succeed.”

“We are in a position to be able to offer a long-term deal to Greg and we are delighted to have him on board. Not only are we impressed with his talents but his attitude and application throughout our programme has been outstanding.”

Charnwood College Boys Development Squad

Starting in September 2021, the Leicester Riders are looking for local talent to join their Charnwood College Development squad.

The Development Squad is open to Boys aged 16-19. The squad will follow a 10+ hour weekly programme consisting of Games, Team Practices, Skill Sessions, Strength & Conditioning and Video review sessions alongside quality education at Charnwood College. 

Please contact Will Maynard at [email protected]s.co.uk if you’re interested in joining!

Two Victories Over Manchester

Both the Charnwood teams defeat Manchester basketball academy over the weekend. 

Charnwood WEABL took home a 54-77 road win against the Mystics in the WEABL Summer Showcase.  Despite a close first half between both teams, the Riders changed the course of the game with a 35-point third quarter as well as holding the host team to two points.  In the fourth, Mystics gained momentum in the quarter with 21 points; however, they were unable to overcome the deficit. Charnwood was led by Sobiah Harry (17 points) and Kate Davies (14 points), whilst Mystics’ Charlie Wroe had 14 points in the game. 

The Charnwood EABL team got a 80-64 victory at Loughborough University against Manchester Magic. Both teams started off slow, but the Riders stepped up their intensity in the second quarter, with the help from Greg Wild and Victor Ndoukou.  The Riders defensive pressure limited Magic to 32% field goals and caused 28 turnovers. Greg Wild’s led the team with 30 points and  was assisted by Ndoukou’s double-double of 21 points and 11 rebounds. Whereas, Boakye-Yiadon had 19 points for the host team. 

Next up, Charnwood EABL looks to continue their winning streak as they travel to Myerscough College on Saturday 22nd May at 5pm.

Charnwood Get Their First WEABL Summer Showcase Win

Charnwood College Riders defeat Derby Trailblazers Academy in their WEABL Summer Showcase opener, 64-52.

After one lead change in the first quarter, the Riders remained in control throughout the contest. A three from both Molly James and Kate Davies helped the hosts go on a 8-point scoring run in the first. However, Derby scraped their way back  to make it a 3-point game to start the second quarter. Despite all efforts from the Trailblazers, Charnwood went on a tear in the second half extending their lead to 18 points. Just like the EABL team, Charnwood’s depth was a key contributor to the team’s success as they had 27 bench points compared to Derby’s 13.

Kacey Cox led the Riders with an 11 point and 11 rebound double-double, whist Lovatt had 16 points for the Trailblazers. 

Scorers

Riders: K. Cox 11, James 11, Lecuyer 8, Bird 7, Shaw 6, Lambert 5, Davies 5, Januszewska 4, B. Cox 3, Read 2, Shadrick 2. 

Trailblazers: Lovatt 16, Obanor 8, Hamilton 6, Barker 5, Sklepic 5, Hutton 4, Adair 4.

Charnwood College are next in action against the Manchester Mystics Academy at 4pm on April Wednesday 12th April. 

Charnwood Win their EABL Showcase Opener

Charnwood College Riders defeat Derby Trailblazers Academy in their EABL Summer Showcase opener, 83-69.

Out the gate, Riders showed their defensive tenacity scoring 11 out of 21 points off Derby turnovers. After 11 lead changes, the host team had a short nine point run until Blake Bowman’s offensive versatility closed the gap for the Trailblazers. By halftime Charnwood’s depth was on notice as they had 15 bench points led by Campbell’s five. Riders added more pressure defensively in the third with seven steals and causing nine turnovers for the visitors. To finish up,  Greg Wild led by example as he took over offensively in the fourth with 13 points and was assisted by Kanu’s six points and two steals. 

Wild and Ndoukou led the scoring for the Riders with 26 and 12 points respectively. Whilst, Bowman had a standout 39-point performance for the Trailblazers with 17 in the fourth.

Scorers

Riders: Wild 26, Ndoukou 12, Gudza 10, Perry 10, Hanson 8, Campbell 7,  County 6, Hadly 2, Banwo 2.

Trailblazers: Bowman 39, Alexander 14, Addo 8, Hopper 8.

Charnwood College are next in action against the Manchester Magic Academy at 12.30pm on Sunday 16th May .

Levenston elected to BE board

Riders Managing Director, Russell Levenston, has been elected to the board of Basketball England.

Russell has been with the Riders since 2007, transforming the club both on and off the court. He has been integral in developing the Riders player pathway from Charnwood College through Loughborough University and the senior teams. Having also spent 13 years at Milton Keynes Lions/Hemel Royals as a volunteer then later as a general manager, Levenston has vast experience in the basketball community.

Elected Directors are from within our sport and are appointed through an election process in which BE voting members can vote for their preferred candidate.

Levenston has been appointed an Elected Director for an initial term of three years.

A huge congratulations Russell, from everyone at Leicester Riders, Loughborough Basketball, and Charnwood College.

Charnwood College Fall Short in L Lynch Trophy Opener

Charnwood College Riders fell short in a hard-fought battle against Loughborough Riders in the L Lynch Trophy.

Both sides were slow to open the game, with Loughborough being the first to strike and open a small lead behind the inside play of Loughborough newcomer CJ Hayden, to lead 17-13 at the first break. 

Charnwood’s Greg Wild exploded in the game, leading the way for Charnwood on route to 28 points on 7-11 shooting to help Charnwood out to a lead until mid-way through the final quarter. 

Jonas Dieterich (21 points, 9 rebounds) and Harrison Gamble (27 points, 11 rebounds) led the way scoring wise for the Loughborough Riders and it was a fourth quarter explosion on the offensive end that saw the home team extend the lead and grab victory. 

“This was a good good starting point for this group of players, however there’s much more for us to work on. I thought our lack of experience showed down the stretch and a couple of mental lapses saw the game get away from us in the fourth ,” commented Coach Maynard. 

Credit to Loughborough for making big-time plays. For our first game, I am happy with how we competed, especially due to circumstance we have been in over the past month.”

Solid performances from Victor Ndoukou (15 points, 7 rebounds), Giovanni Emejuru (14 points, 13 rebounds) and Kanu Gudza (11 points, 7 assists) to keep the game competitive in the season opener.

BOXSCORE

Charnwood now look to Wednesday where they will face the Derby Trailblazers Academy in the EABL.

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.