- National Teams
Essex Rebels have become the third team to withdraw from the WBBL Cup due to a temporary venue closure, the WBBL have confirmed.
The Rebels join Caledonia Pride and Durham Palatinates in not participating in the season-opening competition, while Sheffield Hatters pulled out of the entire season due to financial restraints.
That now leaves eight teams in the Cup with Leicester Riders, Manchester Met Mystics, Newcastle Eagles and Nottingham Wildcats in the North, while BA London Lions, Cardiff Met Archers, Oaklands Wolves and Sevenoaks Suns are in the South.
However, the Lions have had to forfeit their scheduled game against Oaklands this weekend – in line with the league’s updated regulations – due to a positive test for COVID-19 resulting in the entire team having to isolate.
The result goes down as a 20-0 victory for the opposition, following on from a similar incident in the BBL when Bristol Flyers were forced to cancel their opening two fixtures, and is unlikely to be the last occurrence.
The WBBL Cup is set to get underway this weekend with both games from the North group taking place on Saturday before a break for the international window the following weekend.
During the second national lockdown in England, elite leagues including the WBBL and WNBL D1 can continue, though junior leagues have been postponed until at least January 2021.
The WEABL is included in that, meaning a halt to the competition which had begun yesterday with City of London Academy defeating Itchen College on the road.