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Coaching honours for Liburd, Gibbons

Our WEABL awards continue today with two worthy coaches who have gone above and beyond to get the very best from their sides this season.

After going 1-8 last year in the WEABL Northern Conference, Nottingham were a completely different programme this season. Going 8-2 and securing the #2 seed for the playoffs, the Wildcats were also the only side to beat league leaders Charnwood during the regular season.

Those improvements have been enough for Kenrick Liburd to receive the Coach of the Year award, impressive his peers with his work both on and off the court.

In the Southern Conference, there is a familiar name on the Coach of the Year award as City of London Academy’s Jackson Gibbons has been chosen as a worthy recipient once again.

Winning his 4th award in the last 5 years (15/16, 16/17, 18/19, 19/20), Gibbons has once against shown his pedigree as a top developer of talent. Despite a number of injuries that threatened to derail CoLA’s season, the London programme have stayed on course and enjoyed a 7-3 record during the regular season.

As #3 seeds, CoLA have since defeated Liburd’s Nottingham as well as Southern Conference #1 seed John Madejski Academy in a stunning run to the WEABL final.

“I’m pretty overwhelmed to be nominated again, there are many great and deserving coaches in the WEABL, so to be acknowledged is something I don’t take it lightly,” said Gibbons.

“Especially with the seasons JMA and Copleston have had, Luque and Nick deserve recognition for sure. This has been our hardest season to date with injuries, it has been tough getting through games and so I’d like to dedicate the award to Aaliyah Samuels-Campbell and Ameila Sandie, who both suffered season ending knee injuries, a coach truly couldn’t ask for two more courageous guards to go into battle with and we miss them dearly.

“I’d also like to thank the coaching staff and PE team at CoLA, who make working there such a special experience, especially Brian Nguru who has been assisting this year but really deserves so much of the credit for his preparation and development of the girls season, he’s an unbelievable bright spark, someone I’m blessed to work with and I know the team feels exactly the same way.”

The awards keep coming this afternoon as we look back at some of the best WEABL performances this season and how they stack up across the history of the league, before we continue tomorrow with Defensive Player of the Year at 10:00am.

The WEABL finals take place at 2:30pm next Wednesday at the University of Essex as CoLA take on Copleston, with entry free for all spectators.