Continuing to develop and grow the British Basketball franchise further, the Scorchers have added another chain to the development pathway.
The Surrey Scorchers have already established a strong relationship with Three Rivers based in Walton-Upon-Thames. Here the Scorchers basketball academy compete in the ABL and is coached by recently retired Caylin Raftopoulos.
Heading into his 5th year as Head Coach of the academy Caylin will now be full time within the development structure and leading the Scorcher 2’s alongside the Academy team and Team Surrey University side.
Excited to be driving the programme forward Caylin commented: “I am looking forward to heading up the 2’s at Surrey. Being a BBL club it is important to have other opportunities that can potentially feed the professional side and grow Scorchers basketball.
Another men’s team enables our academy players to gain experience in a physical league above their own age group. Also, linking through to the University of Surrey will give us the opportunity to attract a wide selection of players and grow Team Surrey basketball at the University.”
As Surrey University propels basketball forward as a recognised performance sport. The University team is now supplied with sport psychology, nutrition, and performance lifestyle support. In addition to this, players gain access to S&C programming with free sessions at the Team Surrey Physiotherapy clinic.
A product of this pathway, BSc Accounting and finance student Ayo Amolegbe has completed his studies at Three Rivers and is currently playing with the Scorchers alongside Team Surrey BUCs squad.
Commenting on his journey Ayo said “Coming through the academy helped elevate my game and prepare me for university life. I was able to develop as a player alongside my studies which is continuing throughout my university career. My opportunity with the Scorchers is allowing me to train with the highest level available in the country and learn from top level coaches.”
The future for Surrey basketball development looks bright at Scorchers. Lloyd Gardner, the newly appointed head coach of the BBL team comes with a wealth of expertise in this area. Having developed one of the top academies in the country with Barking Abbey, Lloyd understands what a successful programme looks like. Whilst working alongside the coaching staff to continue to grow this pathway, Surrey Scorchers have a vision to expand into the national league junior set up in the forthcoming seasons.