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WEABL 2021/22 structures confirmed

The WEABL structure for the 2021/22 season has been confirmed.

The women’s elite academy league will continue with its two-conference format, dividing the country into a North and South league.

Copleston High School and City of London Academy were crowned the most recent co-champions in 2019/20 after Basketball England made the decision to cancel the play-offs to safeguard players and staff.

The entire of the 2020/21 season was then postponed as the COVID-19 pandemic put paid to all sport that didn’t carry elite status.

For the upcoming campaign, 11 teams return from 2019/20 with the exception of Myerscough College who elected not to reapply ahead of the eventually cancelled 2020/21 season.

James Watt College BMet (North) and The American School in London (South) were both scheduled to be new entries into the league a year ago, but have had to wait a season to make their WEABL debuts.

Moulton College are also added to the mix as a new entry, they’re making their first bow in the WEABL as both conferences now contain seven teams apiece.

Here’s the full line up for 2021/22:

Basketball England’s Senior Delivery Manager Gail Richards said: “Being unable to run the Academy leagues in 2020/21 wasn’t something anybody wanted, but it was unavoidable in order to keep players and teams as safe as possible.

“2021/22 is set to be a highly competitive and exciting season, with a number of teams continuing to go from strength to strength, which was evident in the recent Summer Showcase competitions.

“I am sure the leagues will continue to provide a valuable environment for players to develop both on and off the court and I want to wish every programme all the best for the upcoming campaign.”

The new season will begin following the recent conclusion of the WEABL Summer Showcase, Basketball England’s seven-week competition that took place in May and June.

Featuring 12 WEABL sides and running alongside a similar EABL edition, the Summer Showcase was designed to provide access to high-quality competition for young elite players in order to enhance their development and progression opportunities after lockdown eased.

With a strong focus on player development, the Showcase didn’t crown an overall team winner upon completion, instead aiming to stage as many games as possible in a safe and responsible environment.

That experience for teams and players alike will no doubt give many a head start moving into 2021/22, making for what should be a highly competitive season that’s not to be missed!