EABL Final preview – Charnwood v Myerscough

In a fitting end to tomorrow’s schedule, the EABL final will involve two conference rivals going head-to-head as Charnwood do battle with Myerscough. 

Bringing the curtain down on the Academy showpiece, these teams are all set to decide their season series after one win apiece during the regular season. 

The pair split their encounters, each winning their home leg. Charnwood secured a nail-biter in the Midlands 68-66, whilst ‘Sco’s 92-79 home victory was the Riders’ only loss of the regular season. 

The two teams have regularly traded blows at the top of the Northern Conference for a number of seasons, and taking their battle to Manchester for what is sure to be a stunning final will provide a fitting end to what has been a brilliant campaign. 

Both programmes have also managed to win it all and claim the EABL playoff title during their history. Myerscough won their first title in 2014/15, the competition’s second season, as they beat SGS College 70-56. 

The win marked a dominant season for the North West side that continued into 2015/16. That year’s final saw Charnwood topple tomorrow’s opponents, beating them 73-62 to end a streak of almost two years without a loss. 

The Riders would then take a turn to step to the fore, winning in 2018/19 against Barking in what is widely regarded as the greatest comeback in EABL history.  

Down 63-44 with 10 minutes to go, Charnwood reeled off a 31-0 fourth quarter to claim their second title in spectacular fashion. 

Myerscough were named as co-champions with Barking during the COVID-19 affected 2019/20 season, pulling them level on two titles apiece with the Riders. 

With both teams combining to win 25 of their possible 28 games this season, tomorrow’s final is a match up between two even teams with plenty of talent at their disposal. 

With both teams combining to win 25 of their possible 28 games this season, tomorrow’s final is a match up between two even teams with plenty of talent at their disposal. 

Myerscough’s Bryan Akanmu was able to land the Northern conference MVP award, after coming third in total efficiency (23.3), fourth in scoring (19.4PPG) and seventh in rebounding (10.4RPG). 

He also dropped a match winning 39 points when these teams last met a month ago, so he’ll enter the final with plenty of confidence to keep his good form going. 

Charnwood enjoyed a heavy representation in the end of season awards, with Kanu Gudza, Louie Jordan and Victor Ndoukou all making the North’s 1st team. 

Wing Ceejay Hanson was tabbed as the conference’s Most Improved Player, whilst Gudza also received the Defensive Player of the Year award. That’s no surprise given his league-leading 4.4 steals per game this season. 

There’s little to pick between these two sides, who are more than familiar with each other and match up well whenever they meet.  

With their season series currently tied at 1-1 and with both programmes enjoying two EABL titles to their name, one team will stand tall come tomorrow evening, earning valuable bragging rights after another title winning campaign. 

Charnwood head coach Will Maynard: “Really looking forward to what the final has in store for us, it’s looking like it’s going to be a very competitive game and I’m sure it will be a great showcase for the EABL.  

“The guys have put in a huge amount of work over their time at Charnwood and they will very much be up for the challenge. It’s been a difficult couple of years for all juniors in British basketball, I’m sure neither team will take this opportunity for granted.” 

Myerscough head coach Neal Hopkins: “Not so long ago we were talking about ‘unprecedented times’ and the impact that this would have – I think it is important to recognise the hurdles that have had to be jumped by everyone to get to this point. The EABL has given us our normality back and I am very proud of the resilience that we have shown, reaching the final is a huge achievement considering the last two years, it is something we are relishing. 

“I am sure the game will have everything in it, Charnwood are a highly talented team who will come into to the game with a lot of confidence, we are coming off the back of a really strong end to the season and we are hungry to end it the right way.” 

EABL Final live stats HERE

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