High Profile Teams Announced For Weekend Tournament
The teams have been announced for the Weekend Tournament of high profile basketball at Eston Leisure Centre in an event that will celebrate a return to sports entertainment for the Teesside Lions after a 15 month Covid absence.
In addition to the Lions, top Scottish side St Mirren, Division One outfit Newcastle University and local rivals Tees Valley Mohawks will compete in the two-day tournament this weekend.
The action begins at 10.30am on both days with the preliminary rounds being played in the first six games followed by Sunday’s 3/4 place game at 1pm and the final at 2.15pm.
There will be a host of top players on show with Ronald Blain of Newcastle a shortlist for Division One player of the season. Coach Mark Elderkin was also on the shortlist for Coach of the year. The Mohawks will be pinning a lot on the shoulders of American Chris Jones under new coach James Nicholson.
The potential match up of former Newcastle Eagles BBL legend Charles Smith for Newcastle Uni against his previous team Mohawks could be a spicy one.
St Mirren, from just outside of Glasgow were most recently the 2020 runners-up in the Scottish Championship and Scottish Cup. The team feature several Scottish International players including Co-Captain Nick Collins and Chris Clearly who competed in the 2018 Commonwealth games in Australia.
Fellow co-captain Fergus Harte also has BBL experience with the Glasgow Rocks while the team are led by Canadian Coach Matt Giroux in a playing and coaching career with the club that spans 20 years.
The main focus however, will be on the debut of Teesside Lions new Coach Marc Steutel in what will be his first game since leading Great Britain to the European Finals. The Lions team will not be finalised until a couple of weeks but already there are a number of stellar names set to feature with 7 foot professional Theo Turner, highly rated former England junior Jack Wilson and new signing Matt Hughes all set to make their Lions debuts.
Tickets are priced at just £5 for a weekend pass or £15 for a family of four. This represents incredible value for spectators to enjoy up to 8 top quality games over the weekend. Fans are advised to arrive 30mins prior and must have advance tickets to enable the event to follow Covid procedures and guidelines.
Weekend Tournament Schedule
10.30am Lions v Newcastle Uni
11.45am Mohawks v St Mirren
1.00pm Lions v Mohawks
2.15pm St Mirren v Newcastle Uni
10.30am St Mirren v Lions
11.45am Newcastle uni v Mohawks
1.00pm 3/4 Place