- National Teams
Worcester Wolves have withdrawn from the BBL with immediate effect, the league has announced today.
The decision has come as a result of the impact of COVID-19, with not only the loss of ticket revenue, but sponsorship revenue which has made the club unable to afford the cost of participation.
Worcester Wolves have today informed the League that they are unable to continue in the British Basketball League. As such, the franchise is withdrawn from BBL with immediate effect.
— British Basketball League (@BBLofficial) June 23, 2021
In an official club statement on their website, Worcester said:
The Worcester Wolves Board is very sad to announce that the Board has decided not to enter a men’s team in next season’s (2021/22) British Basketball League competitions.
The Club will continue with our Worcester Wolves’ men’s team in the national basketball league, our Worcester Wolves women’s team in the women’s national basketball league and our exciting new Women’s Wheelchair Basketball League team in the new High Performance Pathway Premier League. We are committed to the development of all 3 teams and will do all that we can to support them going forward.
The Board has come to this decision about the BBL men’s team for a number of reasons:
Covid-19 has hit the Club hard. It is now over 16 months since there was last a home basketball crowd at the University of Worcester Arena. Naturally this has had a negative impact upon income, together with the increase in expenditure across other additional requirements
Several potential sponsors have also been badly affected by the pandemic and there is no realistic prospect of the essential income from sponsors meeting pre – pandemic levels.
In these circumstances, the Board has decided that the Club simply cannot afford the costs of participation in the BBL next season.
In addition, the recent rise in cases and the ongoing ‘amber list’ status of the USA and European countries has added considerable further uncertainty about the prospects for next season
Looking ahead, together with the development of our 3 Wolves senior teams, the Board is also determined to further renew our commitment to the development of grass roots basketball. Supporting the growth of community development and the existing Wolves Academy will be a key focus.
We would like to take this opportunity to thank all the fans, players and coaches who have contributed to the Wolves BBL successes in the 15 years in which we have played in British Basketball League.
We look forward to very exciting seasons and hope that Covid restrictions will be lifted and that we can welcome fans to the University of Worcester Arena for Women’s, Wheelchair and Men’s Basketball soon.
The club formed in 2000 and have been in the top flight since 2006.
“We are sad that Worcester Wolves have withdrawn from the League and thank them for their participation over the past 15 years,” the BBL said on their twitter. “Our thoughts are with the players, staff and supporters at what is a particularly difficult time.”