The London Lions are delighted with Hapoel Tel Aviv’s EuroCup test
The London Lions are preparing to play their next EuroCup game against Hapoel Tel Aviv at the OVO Arena Wembley on Wednesday.
The London side are seventh in Group B of the competition with a record of four wins and five losses, while Tel Aviv sit fourth.
And with nine games remaining before the next stage and the top eight teams progressing, the tie represents an important chance to climb the table for both sides.
The Lions have already set two mighty records this season when they became the first British team in 18 years to win a home game in the EuroCup on October 18, beating Trento 80-75.
They then became the first British team to win an away game in this competition when they beat Hamburg 103–73 on 22 November.
British basketball continues its rapid growth in popularity as viewership figures show that the Lions’ EuroCup game on December 21, which will be broadcast on BT Sport 1, saw a 340 per cent increase in viewership over the previous record.
The sport is thriving in the UK as last season’s game not only drew record crowds but also had a sell-out crowd at the Copper Box Arena, including over 15,000 at the O2 Arena when the Lions faced Leicester Riders in the BBL Play-Off Final.
The Lions’ involvement in the EuroCup, one of basketball’s most prestigious club competitions, is helping the sport grow as they have become the first British team to compete in the EuroCup since 2007.
The team boasts a wealth of talent, including former NBA players Miye Oni, Sam Dekker and Kosta Koufos, as well as British international Ovie Soko. The star-studded roster includes top local talent, with the diverse roster having a wealth of experience playing in major basketball leagues around the world.
Ryan Schmidt, London Lions head coach said: “We are delighted to have the opportunity to host Hapoel Tel Aviv here in London on Wednesday.
“They are an extremely talented team and have an excellent fan base that travels a lot which will create a great atmosphere at Wembley Arena.
“This is another opportunity to continue showcasing British basketball on one of the biggest stages and we look forward to the challenge.”