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Just a beginning

1st trip in book. Memories made.

While there is still lots of uncertainty around in terms of international travel, we have succeeded in safely travelling to EYBL U16 tournament in Debrecen, Hungary. Not only we travelled but we competed and proved that UK teams can be a threat top European competition. Our brave squad split record with 2 wins and 2 losses, however most important was a progression over period of this tournament. Our team showed not only we are athletic unit, but we can adapt to different styles of basketball.

Our boys started tournament with clash against Romanian Sibiu Basketball club. Our team established 15 point lead half way through 3rd quarter, however fatigue from travel across continent took its tall and Romanians were able to cut our lead to only 2 points with 1 mins left. Strong resilience from our boys helped them hold their nerves and secured first international win 64-62 in their European campaign.

On day 2 we faced Macedonian team Vodno Suns Skopje . Balkan team provided our team much of difficult test. Combination of different defensive system, good shooting performance. There was lots to reply for our boys. But led by Connor James (31 points, 10 rebound), Reale Basquine (23 points, 16 rebounds) and Noa Istrefi (20 points, 8 rebounds) our U16 team prevailed and secured 2nd win of tournament!

3rd day saw our teams facing Hungarians teams of Atemeromu Paks and hosting Debreceni Academy. Our boys left all they had however cam short on both occasions. We finished our first tournament with 2 wins and 2 losses.

Head Coach Mauro DiNunzio said: “EYBL trip was a great experience for our team. Boys competed with their heart each game they play. Improvement throughout tournament was just unreal. This trip helped us create amazing bond between player and helped us realised how good we can play. This was really win win situation for our squad “

We cannot miss fact of outstanding performances by Connor James and Reale Basquine. Connor was most efficient player among all teams competing in Hungary (eff 25.50) while Real was crowned best rebounder of tournament (14.50 rebound per game)

Our team made everyone proud at our club and we are very confident that this is just a beginning for our young side. Amazing progress made under coach Mauro was visible for anyone following progress of our team at EYBL stage. Boys now head back to National League and CBL competitions and will prepare for stage 2 which takes place in Trsteniki, Serbia 20-23 January 2022.

Back at it!

Long wait is over. This could not get any better.

We are happy to announce that our U16’s squad under coach Mauro DiNunzio is flying out to Debrecen, Hungary to take part in EYBL U16 Central Europe. News like this is a massive relieve for our club knowing what difficult times we are going through.

Our boys and coaches have negatively tested for Covid and are on the way to one of most prestigious tournaments in European basketball.

Our U16 team has started season with undefeated record 4-0 in National league and boys are now have their eyes on EYBL which takes place between 4th-7th November.

Head Coach Mauro said:” This trip is a great stepping stone for the team and club. It gives us a chance to compete against best teams in Europe. It can be a challenging however, this experience can definitely boost team and players confidence and help boys develop their game. Myself and players are very excited for this opportunity!

Our boys will start tournament with clash against CBU SIBIU coming from Romania on Thursday night. Following day our club will square up against Macedonian Vodno Skopje.

Saturday will see our team playing twice. 1pm vs Atomeromu Paks followed by 7pm tip against Debrecen Academy.

This is an outstanding opportunity for our squad to gain unreplaceable experience at that high level.

All games will be livestreamed on YouTube and we will keep you posted with links on our social media. Look out this space!

Welcome Coach Stiller!

We are thrilled to announce that we have secured service of most experience and title coaches in history of UK basketball. Coach Sam Stiller will be in charge of our men’s team competing in division 3.

Coach Stiller had a pro career that spanned over two decades both domestically and in Israel, whilst also representing England and Great Britain internationally. During his playing career in UK with Cadburys Boost Kingston he had a chance to compete against powerhouses like Barcelona, Real Madrid, CSKA Moscow or Maccabi Tel-Aviv. He is known as one of greatest shooters that UK ever produced.

After retiring from playing eventually got into coaching, where he helped take NASSA from Division 4 to Division 1 from 2010-2013, whilst picking up three consecutive Coach of the Year Awards, and then picking up another one in 2016-17 with London Westside. Coach Stiller has since moved to Israel where he worked at HAPOEL Nesher.

Summer 2021 saw Sam return to UK and we are truly fortunate to secure services of such an experience coach to help us build our Men’s side of program. Coach Daniel is stepping down from Head coach ta men’s to help our community side which has been growing in numbers. This is what GM Daniel Szatkowski had to say:” Our club has grown to really big numbers with over 200 players registered. There is big number of new projects we are working on and therefore i have less and less time to coach. When i heard about an opportunity to employ Sam it was no brainer to me. His vision, passion and experience is what our club needs right now. I am really happy to welcome Sam to our London Elite family”

Our Men’s team is currently 4-0 across competitions and have progress to last 16 in National Cup with confident win against Division 2 London Westside 84-56.

Coach Stiller said:” I know despite being young club it has already a great structure, support and philosophy. From developing great youngster all the way up to have a great potential with men’s team. I can see great opportunity for me to help club grow to another level. Our short goal is to make promotion to division 2 and in few years time make it to BBL.”

“We have currently very talented and experience team and it is time for Elite to shine!”

You can see Coach Sam in action at next Men’s game which will take place Saturday 30th October vs Surrey Rams. 6pm tip at Capital City Academy. exciting times ahead!

Phase No.2

Basketball can change lives. Basketball has the power to change lives. When we first met Aaron Pyne , who joined among other junior Elitarians our dreams and visions were not wide enough to encompass such a leader and personality to be part of our team.

In 2019, shortly after opening London Elite club, Aaron Pyne made a big impact on our U17’s team leading it to good campaign in prestigious EYBL league. His outstanding performance did not go unnoticed as Aaron was selected to All Star 5 at the stage in Poland, Lublin.

“I could tell from beginning that Aaron has this special gift of competitiveness. He was always confident in achieving goals and worked really hard. It was amazing to assist him on this journey.”

Aaron not only shone at international level but helped our club achieve what is hard to believe, two U18 titles in most completive leagues, CBL and RBL. Furthermore Aaron was awarded RBL MVP. It is hard to believe this could be achievable without Aaron’s help. His contribution on court was more then outstanding.

Aaron said:” I decided to join London Elite because I was looking for more competitive environment. I really loved that I got pushed and developed into high standards PG. Sometimes I look back and I can’t believe how much of great memories have had at Elite. Winning championships, having basketball family, travel around Europe. This was big part of me becoming who I am now. I am truly grateful to coach Daniel and coach Kieran for all help, Capital City Academy for all support.

Following the profile of our program which is to help UK players achieve their dream and secure full scholarship to play overseas. Aaron is just yet another testimony. We are proud of what he has achieved and thrilled to have another of our Elitarian being noticed and given a chance for further basketball career and oversea education.

Next chapter is ahead of Aaron, but we are more then confident he will far as his talented and working ethic are on different level. Our general Manager Daniel Szatkowski said :

“I am more then proud of Aaron achievement. He has inspired lots of new players to join us, he made London Elite recognisable across UK, assisted Elite in achieving championships. His overall contribution to elite family will go unmatched for long time.”

Aiming stars

Prolific Prep School. Name familiar to many basketball fans in whole world. Program based in Napa Valley north of San Francisco. Known as “Pro Prep” for short, Prolific Prep includes a highly qualified staff and offers the opportunity for top US players who compete with accomplished International level athletes, a unique fusion that provides an unparalleled competitive advantage. Program is run by famous Coach Billy McKnight who was two years as head coach at the United States Basketball Academy in Blue River, Oregon. Program has produced multiple NBA players with recent Jalen Green who has been selected with number 2 pick in NBA draft 2021 by Houston Rockets.

Prolific Prep head coach Billy McKnight said: “We look forward to having Alex part of our program at Prolific Prep this upcoming year. Prolific Prep will again be one of the top programs in the country as we compete for a national championship. Alex will bring toughness and versatility at the guard position. We look forward to having him and helping our back court.”

We could not be happier to see our player, Alex Wildish being part of such a famous program. Alex performances has not gone unnoticed by American coaches and in season 21/22 Alex will proudly wear Prolific jersey.

Having led our U18 to RBL title was one of signs of talent Alex has. Not long after his dominant performance Alex another inspiring performance saw our club collect CBL title with win over Brixton Topcats. Alex collected MVP award.

Head Coach Daniel Szatkowski said:” Alex is a very unique player. He can come in at most difficult time of the game and changed dynamics of the game. In RBL final our team was down 14 in 4th quarter. Alex came in and led our great comeback for RBL title. Knowing calibre of Prolific Prep is breath-taking but in other hand i know, that Alex has clearly earned it and deserves it. He will be truly missed but he is just another testimony what London Elite is about.”

We Had a chance to sit down and ask Alex couple questions:

1)What made you join London Elite?

-It was a level of coaching and competition attracted me and I already had connections with coaches and players from past. Environment is very friendly and competitive at the same time.

2)What did you learn during the time with us?

-At Elite I learned how to be a better teammate and I gained skill and grew as a player in many ways. It transferred directly to my game and help me reach another level.

3)What was best thing during your stay at Elite?

-The best thing during my time at elite was winning both championships and being the MVP of one. These memories will stay with me forever. I am glad i could contribute to overall success of the club.

4)What would you advise next generation of players?

-I would advise the next generation to never give up, stay consistent with the work you put in and be a student of the game. Do not let anyone to outwork you.

We are very thankful for all Alex has done for our club. He great performance helped us sweep U18 season and off court he become one of us. True friend and brother to all of our players and coaches. Best of luck Alex!

#londonelite #elitebasketball #prolificprep #pathway #USbasketball #basketballengland #elitehoops #hardworkpaysoff

Season update

With lockdown coming slowly to the end with clear map for return to play  on the horizon, we are truly delighted to inform you that outdoor U18’s trainings will resume from 29th of March while indoor session will start on 12th of April 2021 . Men’s team will follow younger squads on 17th May. While the things we take for granted slowly return to our lives those positive news is something we really looking forward to.

Our General Manager Daniel Szatkowski said: “This lockdown was in particular hard for our players, as shortly before Christmas all teams were ready for start of the season. There is a big challenge for all staff at London Elite to make sure we can provide as much as possible for what is left of 20/21 season.”

With positive news of return to trainings, we are happy to confirm that our U18 squads will restart their Community Basketball League from 16th of May 2021 . This will provide much needed mental booster for boys and girls who were kept away from game they love so much. We are adamant about getting this return right, and minimising the risk to our players, coaches and families, so  as a club we will make sure all safety procedures are in place .

Club is planning on strengthening theirs community presence with new projects being planted to ensure young people have access to basketball.

Those positive news can mean one: we returning to work with appreciation for each day on court we get!

2020 Review

2020 is the year to be remembered. We look back in what happened in previous calendar year. Our club has grown in strength despite all obstacles we faced.

SEASON 19/20

Season 19/20 was cut short due to lockdown being imposed however we look back to our EYBL experience keeping our heads high. In first year of entering club performed on great level against top European competition.

It led to some of our players receiving individual awards of prestigious All Star 5 of tournaments. Aaron Pyne and Israel Olalekan shined at U17 level while Matthew Disu collected this award for his great performance at U20 level. Head Coach Daniel Szatkowski said: “It is shame we never got to finish U17’s season but overall experience showed we belonged to that high level of basketball and can perform against great clubs”

Our Club always priorities development as a key for success. In season 19/20 our talented U12 squad was crowned champions of CBL Division 1! This is outstanding achievement bearing in mind how competitive the league was. Boys showed amazing commitment and heart for the game. This successful campaign would not be possible without impact that our young guard Kaya Birsen had on a team. On many occasions Kaya led our team and earned himself a MVP of the league title. We cannot miss the fact that our top scorer Anton Safin was named to All Star 5 of the league. Well done!

PREPERATION FOR SEASON 20/21

We could not achieve our goals if it was not for our partners. We are fully delighted that from season 20/21 we have taken our partnership with London School of Basketball to whole new level. It creates unique combination and helps London players to take their game to next level while studying at Capital City Academy.

London Elite has entered 8 teams into national league, and 9 teams into CBL for upcoming season 20/21. It is linked to heavy increase of members in our club. It is worth to mention that heading into 2020 year we had 80 members while by Christmas 2020 time this number was 140!

Our European campaign not only continues, but has been expanded by adding U16 boys and U18 Girls. It gives 4 squads an opportunity to take part in European league in season 20/21! We are proud to say that we have made history as first British team to enter European Girls Basketball league. Head Coach William Twigg said: “Great opportunities for girls and women in our sport right now. I believe London Elite will optimise every experience for them in the EGBL and other leagues at U18s international level”

It was always obvious for us that we cannot be sure on when domestic leagues will start. However we focused on things we can control. We organised and played 30 friendly games between August and Christmas. It provided great replacement for lack of leagues that are delayed till at least March/April 2021.

Shortly before Christmas we have opened our clubs merchandise shop which provides all sort of clothing accessories at affordable level. It is another step club is taking towards bright future, but also a gives a way of direct support of club to stay afloat during current uncertain times .

WHATS NEXT?

Our Head Coach Daniel Szatkowski said:” 2020 was a year of growth for us. Lockdowns imposed on UK did not help at all however we prevailed despite obstacles. We are currently in another lockdown which is frustrating. However I am sure and confident that determination of coaches, parents and players will not only allow us to pull through these times, but we will come out of it stronger. You will see in 2021 what London Elite is. New competitions added, new equipment, new pathways to America and Europe. New coaches and even more fun in this basketball journey”

Merchandise shop is live!

2020 is by far the most challenging time Elite had to face. Trying to survive between numerous question marks around it’s not the easiest thing to do. London Elite is always driven by passion for youth basketball players from our capital.

There has been not a single day that our devoted GM Daniel Szatkowski and fantastic coaching staff would spend without thinking how to deliver even better quality service to the club, its members and our young Londoners.

With lockdown coming to the end we can not wait to see our players hitting court again and working on what they love most: Basketball. Contrary to what you may expect, during lockdown club was not frozen or idle . We decided to make the most of this time, be creative and progressive. The fruit of this is a unique Elite merchandise stock with brand new designs and adequate selling platform . Our website Manager Onur Birsen alongside Media Head Ivan Grotsev lined up with Coach Daniel’s wife Eva to created amazing platform with products which were not available before. Our GM Daniel Szatkowski said:

To have such an amazing team of people who are devoted to constant work on improvement of club, it is nothing short of miracle. Energy, creativity and commitment is something what makes this club such a strong organisation to overcome Covid-19 crisis. Branding of our club has been taken to another level”

In our shop section you can purchase multiple items, some of which can be personlised. From hats, through accessories and game uniforms into jackets and bags. This shop is place where you can find a lot of helpful items. Simple head to Shop | London Elite and follow instructions for free UK delivery. Enjoy!

Needles to say is that the selling platform has been created to support London Elite Club us during difficult COVID-19 time and every purchase counts towards helping us to stay afloat . We want to maintain our focus on serving young people and local communities. Hopefully you will find something special for this unique Christmas gift adequate for every Basketball lover no matter the age.

Whole New Level

We are thrilled to announce that from season 20/21 we are extending our partnership with London School of Basketball to whole new level.

Our club has grown into leading force of basketball program that provides opportunities from grassroots basketball all the way to international experience. In first year of existing we have grown in numbers from 60 to over 180. We have signed extra 5 coaches and extended competitions. From upcoming season we will be providing National League platform, EYBL exposure to U17 and U20 to all Capital City Academy students who already compete in ABL

This did not go unnoticed as CEO of LSB Nhamo Shire said: “London Elite are a rapidly rising and hugely ambitious club who are already active in Europe and domestic leagues, so offer our Capital City Academy players some excellent outlets in terms of ongoing progression and exposure.  However, their commitment to the grassroots is what most impressed me as we discussed linking in with them.  They are already heavily involved in over 15 primary schools across Brent and Ealing with many more to come.  Setting up the complete pathway pyramid from beginner through to elite is something we are keen to get behind and so will be supporting London Elite in a number of ways in the months and years ahead as we continue to develop the game across the region”

Capital City Academy is located in borough of Brent and offers great education courses alongside amazing basketball set up. Facilities are well known to London basketball players as 500 seater venue will be a home for London Elite Div 3, U18 and U16 in new season.

The LSB, in partnership with Capital City Academy, has launched a new scholarship program for gifted & talented student-athletes enrolled at the Capital City Basketball Academy. Scholarship bursaries range from £500-£1,500 per year, per award and may be used to support direct training costs with eligible areas including travel, equipment, kit, specialist coaching, tutoring, and video performance analysis all geared towards elite performance.

Director Daniel Szatkowski said:” It is no brainer that our vision and LSB vision is pretty much same. We have massive grassroots platform and create pathway all the way to EYBL competitions. With support of Ambassador program, Trip for prestigious BBT tournament in Belgrade, Unique recruitment platform and SAT back up at Capital city… we are destine for success. Lots of hard work but i am confident myself and coach Kieran Matthews can deliver unique championship environment.”

Additionally to our EYBL trips, National League competition we provide for Capital City players we can officially confirm our attendance in Belgrade Basketball Tournament organised by Serbian powerhouse: Partizan Belgrade. Please see all details https://www.london-basketball.com/titans-set-sights-on-serbia/

Should you express an interest and you believe you have what it takes to gain unique experience please apply here: https://www.london-basketball.com/capital-city-trial/.

Elite girls make history!

London Elite is really proud and excited to announce that our U18 girls’ team will follow pathway of boy’s teams and in season 2020/21 participating in European Girls basketball league!This is the first ever British Girls team to participate in such prestigious league. Our girls will play against top competitive teams from Europe and have opportunity to travel to different countries. Inseason 2020/21 there are currently teams from 22 countries signed up.

Our club’s director Daniel Szatkowski said:“It is truly outstanding news to girls’ basketball community in UK. Having a girls youth team in EGBL is not only history being made, but truly platform for any girl wanting to take their game to highest level of basketball league. I am more then excited to see how this project progress.”

We are happy to confirm that William Twigg is taking over Head Coach position for this exciting project. Merlin Piscitelli will be assistant coach for campaign 2020/21. Coach Twigg comments:

“I am really looking forward to coming on board with London Elite. Great opportunities for girls and women in our sport right now and I believe London Elite will optimise every experience for them in the EYBL and other leagues at U18s international level.”Please take this opportunity to get familiar with Coach William in more detail at our website coaches’ section.

Our squad will travel three times to Poland or Latvia. They will play 15 games with results counting towards the league table. Should we make the top 4 we will proceed to play off stage organised in late April 2021 London Elite prides itself in supporting initiatives which creates unique platform for girls in London to take game to upper level.Girls Team is going to train at Capital city Academy in North West London with frequent friendly games as a part of preparation. Should you express any interest please email [email protected] or call our director Daniel on 07453314867