Category: Academy

Manchester Magic and Mystics Academy

Mystics quartet 2019-20

Mystics quartet make the grade on and off the floor

Manchester Mystics players Chloe Andrew, Remi Idowu, Beth Waugh and Lina Asobirionwu have shown they can succeed on and off the court this year.

The talented quartet have been key members of the Mystics U18 National League and WEABL squads for the past two seasons.

The National League team claimed silver at Basketball England’s Final Fours in May.

Now Chloe, Remi, Beth and Lina have triumphed in the classroom, too, completing their A levels in style after two years at Loreto Sixth Form College.

Chloe now heads to the USA to play and study at the University of Northwestern, an NAIA College in Ohio.

Remi is off to the University of Essex to study Mechatronics, Beth will study Quantity Surveying at Sheffield Hallam University, while Lina will study Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine at the University of Nottingham.

We’d like to congratulate them on their successes and wish them all the best for the future.

Steve Vear Academy US Consultant 2019-20

Academy appoints Vear as US Colleges consulant

The Manchester Magic and Mystics Academy has named Steve Vear as its first ever United States colleges consultant.

The move is designed to give all EABL and WEABL academy players and parents the best advice possible when it comes to pursuing playing and academic opportunities in the US.

“It’s a major step forward for the Academy because it adds expertise in a key area,” said club chief executive Phil Gordos.

“We want to make sure our players and parents are equipped with all the right information to make the best choice for them.

“Steve has a lot of knowledge and contacts. He also knows British basketball, so it’s the perfect fit.”

Vear, 36, is well known for running Luol Deng’s global player talent camps and has since started She’s Got Next, a recruitment service helping female players in the UK gain scholarships in the US. 

Based in Los Angeles, he played and coached in the UK before moving to the States three years ago.

“It’s no secret many UK players and parents have a tough time with the US college recruitment process,” said Vear.

“I’ve learnt so much over the last five years through my own research. I’ve also gained invaluable knowledge from some key people, like Jackson Gibbons, Lloyd Gardner and Shane Howard.

“I’m now in a place where I feel very confident that I can spread my experiences and knowledge to really make a big difference.”

Vear will meet Magic and Mystics players and parents for this time when he visits Manchester later this month.

Cantwell Academy Coach 2019-20

Magic appoint Cantwell as Academy coach

Paul Cantwell has joined Manchester Magic Academy’s coaching team for the 2019/20 season.

The 28-year-old is already the lead coach for the club’s U12 community and development programme.

The former Manchester Magic and Manchester Giants player, who has also head coached in France and the United States, will begin his new role in September.

He will have specific responsibility for the Academy’s second team, which plays as Loreto 2 in AoC (Association of Colleges) competitions.

“I grew up playing in this elite programme so I’m looking forward to passing on my experience and knowledge,” said Cantwell.  “It’s important that this club continues to grow.”

Club chief executive Phil Gordos added: “It’s a great appointment for us as we continue to build the Manchester Magic and Manchester Mystics into a formidable force on and off the floor.”

Manchester Magic and Mystics News

Mystics star in WBBL Awards, Academy players selected for Hoopsfix Classic, Magic and Mystics Involved in Schools Finals

The Manchester Mystics WBBL side’s season may have ended after a disappointing Play-off Quarter Final loss against Durham Palatinates; however the players have been honoured with a plethora of awards.

Georgia Jones was named the Molten WBBL All-British Team of the Year, with Sam Roscoe coming off the bench. Rheanne Bailey and Evelyn Ovner were named in the Molten WBBL All-Defensive Team of the Year. Georgia Jones also comes off the bench in the Molten WBBL team of the Year.

In other news

Congratulations to Mystics’ Georgia Jones and Sam Roscoe and former Mystics’ Hannah Shaw, Mollie Campbell and Nicolette Fong Lyew Quee on their selections to the GB Squad.

Mystics Academy’s Jade Mbam has been selected alongside former Mystic’ Ashana Hinds for the Inaugural Hoopsfix All-Star Classic Under 19 Women’s game on Saturday 1st June at 4:00pm.

Magic Academy’s Saul May has been selected in the Hoopsfix All-Star Classic Underclassmen Game on Sunday 2nd June at 2:00pm

There were many of the Magic and Mystics family in action at the English Schools finals, with local schools: Trinity High School (U14 Girls) crowned National Champions, Reddish Vale High School (U16 girls) finishing in second place, and Sale Grammar School (U14 Co-ed) finishing in second place.

Loreto College

Loreto College crowned U17 Boys National Schools Champions 2019

Loreto College U17 Boys were crowned Dynamic English Schools champions after beating Charnwood College 92-78 at the National Basketball Performance Centre on Friday morning.

Josh Grant was named MVP after scoring 24 points and bagging countless rebounds, with Luke Gordos (16), Malachi Boakye-Yiadom (15) and Noah Tchifounga (10) also reaching double figures.

Dan Gargan (9), Saul May (6), Jason Ani (6), Ty Jordan (4) and Mo Shegow (2) also got on the scoresheet for Loreto.

Coached by Pete Paraskeva, Loreto started well, opening up an 8-0 lead before finishing the first quarter 23-15 up.

That advantage became 14 towards the end of the second, before a late Charnwood rally closed the gap to 7 by the halftime interval.

Despite the loss of Ani to injury, Loreto took firm control in the third quarter, going 22 points up, before easing to victory in the fourth despite another late charge from their opponents.

Former Manchester Magic player Greg Wild scored 29 points for Charnwood.

Loreto: Josh Grant, Dylan Consterdine, Saul May, Henry Lythe De Pee, Malachi Boakye-Yiadom, Ty Jordan, Dan Gargan, Noah Tchifounga, Luke Gordos, Jason Ani, Mo Shegow.

For more information about Loreto College, visit the official website:

For more information about Manchester Magic’s basketball academy, contact Phil Gordos at or on 0161 881 0090.

Mystics Academy Chloe Andrew and Jade Mbam

Andrew and Mbam make WEABL Northern Conference All-First Team

Congratulations to Manchester Mystics Academy’s Chloe Andrew and Jade Mbam making the WEABL Northern Conference all-first team and to Remi Idowu making the all-second team.

All the selections were based on the regular season only, and teams were voted for regardless of position by teams and coaches across the WEABL. As a result some of the best players from across the WEABL have been picked for this season’s conference teams, and they’re well deserving of the awards.

Chloe averaged an impressive 14.6ppg, 5.9rpg, 5.6apg, 2.9spg, while Jade averaged an equally impressive 15.1ppg, 6.7rpg, 2.7apg, 2.7spg, and Remi averaged 3.6ppg, 9.7rpg, 1.7apg, 1.1spg, 0.9bpg.

Source: WEABL

Greg Mpofu Mystics U18 Head Coach 2018-19

Mpofu appointed as full-time Mystics U18 Head Coach

Mbongeni Greg Mpofu has been appointed as head coach of the Manchester Mystics Under 18 National League and WEABL teams for the 2018/19 season.

The 30-year-old has been an integral part of the Mystics coaching team for the past two years.

He now gets the chance to lead the U18 programme on and off the floor.

In another key move for the club, Joe Forber becomes acting director of the Mystics junior programme.

“I’m excited about the project and the opportunity to lead the programme in a new direction, especially in the middle of a crucial period for our sport and the women’s game in particular,” said Mpofu.

“It’s certainly a sizeable challenge, but one I feel I’m suited to.

“Implementing a greater use of performance analysis methods, establishing an enhanced pastoral set-up, and encouraging players to have greater ownership of their development and progression pathways will be crucial to the success of the project.”

The Mystics U18s reached last season’s NBL Final Fours under the guidance of Joe Andrew, Natalie Feurtado and Mpofu.

Guiding Mpofu in his new role and overseeing the entire Mystics junior programme is the club’s co-founder Forber.

He has spent the past 18 months re-energising the girls’ set-up from the bottom up and is behind a new U12 league for teams in the north of England.

“We are now building a deep and good quality coaching staff and Greg will be a very important member of the group,” said Forber.

“We are in the very early stages of building a top girls’ programme from Under 12 to Under 18 and WEABL.

“The coaches are very much together and their passion and enthusiasm will begin to pay dividends as we move forward.

“I am happy to help the programme in any way I can and look forward to seeing all our coaches further their basketball careers.”

Loreto 3x3 2018

Loreto Magic claim third in EABL 3×3 Finals

Loreto Magic claimed an impressive third spot at the EABL 3×3 National Finals in Leicester on Wednesday.

The squad of Michael Anumba, Arinze Emeka-Anyakwo, Wesley Oba and Hassan Ramic opened with a 14-12 win over Pool B rivals Copleston before slipping to a 21-17 defeat to Oaklands.

Loreto EABL 3x3 2018

Their record was still good enough to book them a place in the semi-finals, where they came up against a Charnwood College Riders outfit featuring Sesan Russell, voted MVP at the recent Haris Charalambous Memorial Basketball Tournament.

Loreto were beaten 21-10 by the tournament hosts, who went on to claim the title with a 19-14 victory over Myerscough College.

Loreto, who qualified for the six-team showpiece by finishing second in their regional event, then claimed an impressive 21-9 victory over Oaklands in the battle for third.

EABL WEABL 3x3 2018
Lina Asobirionwu

Loreto’s Asobirionwu name WEABL Player of the Week

Loreto College and Manchester Mystics’ Lina Asobirionwu has been named as the latest Player of the Week in the WEABL after an impressive performance for Loreto Mystics Basketball Academy in Week 4.

The 2000-born forward put up 32 points along with 21 rebounds and seven steals to lead her side to a 95-55 victory over Moulton.

“Thank you team,” Asobirionwu declared. “It’s a team award and I am really happy for our whole team and the win that was the most important on the day.

“Also, I would like to thank our coach Ollie, who always tries to motivate us and take the best out of us as young student-athletes.”

Head Coach Aurimas Ollie Verbukas added: “Lina has approached this game in a very professional manner at practice in preparation and executed well during the game.

“She is not just a good basketball player, but also a good character on and off the floor. I am and all the team and are very proud of her and this reward is more than deserved.”

Loreto return to action with a road trip to Nottingham this Wednesday.

(source: WEABL)

New Logo

Loreto College English Schools U17 National Champions

Loreto College beat Charnwood 61-59 in the final of the Under 17 English Schools competition on Thursday, to be crowned National Champions. Loreto’s Josh Pearce was named as the MVP.

Loreto made it to the final with a 68-66 win over Myerscough in the last eight before beating Haringey Sixth Form College 74-31 in the last four.

Loreto College U17 Boys English Schools National Champions 2017