Following his recent visit to Team England’s Men Commonwealth Games selection camp last week, we are delighted to confirm that Plymouth Raiders’ centre, Zak Wells, has made the cut and been invited to the 17 man training camp planned for February.
“The standard has been very high, the effort has been outstanding,” said Head Coach Andreas Kapoulas.
“The whole camp was about a first introduction to the programme leading up to the Commonwealth Games and getting to know each other. Guys wanted to get better through the whole process, very unselfish in the way they did things and it was a real pleasure to work with them.”
The National Basketball Performance Centre was the venue for the on-court portions of the camp that included four practice sessions, including a scrimmage on Tuesday night. Sunday’s focus was on an initial team meeting, baseline physical tests and medical screenings, whereas Wednesday was aimed at recovery and individual player meetings.
Speaking of his involvement in the camp, Wells said, “Being invited to the England camp was a huge honour for me. It was a great camp last week and such a good environment competing against so many talented players. I am already looking forward to the next camp in February!”
As the evaluation process continues towards selecting a final 12-man roster to head to Australia, Coach Kapoulas has confirmed a list of 17 further players for the next Team England camp in February 2018.
Discussing the announcement, Basketball England’s Talent Development and Performance Manager Vladan Dragosavac said, “Moving from 23 players to 17 is by no means a narrowing down in the selection process. Players who aren’t on the list for February’s camp aren’t in any way excluded from final selection and we will continue to consider and observe every eligible player available between now and the end of February.”
“This is just another step in the evaluation process of what remains a wide pool of very talented players as we seek to find the best 12 to take to the Commonwealth Games next April.”
The list for February’s camp in full:
1. Jamell Anderson – FG La Roda (ESP)
2. Darius Defoe – Esh Newcastle Eagles
3. Daniel Edozie – Bristol Flyers
4. Zach Gachette – DBL Sheffield Sharks
5. Joe Ikhinmwin – London Lions
6. Orlan Jackman – Cheshire Phoenix
7. Callum Jones – Manchester Giants
8. Andrew Lasker – Esh Newcastle Eagles
9. Raheem May-Thompson – Cheshire Phoenix
10. Omotayo Ogedengbe – Surrey Scorchers
11. Josh Steel – Surrey Scorchers
12. Andy Thomson – Leicester Riders
13. Adam Thoseby – Sydney Kings (AUS)
14. Mike Tuck – DBL Sheffield Sharks
15. Shane Walker – Leicester Riders
16. Zak Wells – Plymouth Raiders
17. Kai Williams – Esh Newcastle Eagles
Steve Bucknall, Basketball England Board Member said “Having experienced the Commonwealth Games in Australia in 2006, I know how hard these guys will need to train, prepare and compete to bring a medal home. We have assembled a great coaching and support team and I am particularly pleased to give people who have contributed to our sport the opportunity to develop whilst contributing to our medal preparations.
With good preparation and a serious chance of bringing home a medal, we have an opportunity to profile basketball and encourage more young people to get involved in Basketball.”
February’s camp is scheduled to take place 18-21 February 2018 in Manchester. A final roster of 12 players will then be confirmed in late February. After flying out to Australia in March for a preparation camp, the Men’s side will open Pool B play against Scotland on 5 April before further games against India on 7 April and Cameroon on 8 April.