Academy Leagues: Playoffs set to get underway this week

The road to Manchester's National Basketball Performance Centre now begins for the Academy Leagues' playoff hopefuls.

24 teams from across the EABL, WEABL and Tier 2 of the CBL will all be battling it out across the remainder of this month to be the last teams standing, crowned at 2023/24 playoff champions.

Each competition has eight teams vying for their respective titles, and we take a look below at how this Wednesday's opening round of the post-season is shaping up.


After a thrilling regular season, the EABL playoff field is now complete, with the four Elite Eight ties set to get underway this coming Wednesday. 

North conference winners Charnwood College Riders will be looking for their fourth EABL title, their playoff run gets underway at home to South #4 seeds JMA Reading Rockets who will be aiming to win and make the Final Fours for the first time since 2019/20.

In the other side of the draw, South winners and #1 seeds City of London Academy - Southwark will be hoping their regular season success can vault the programme towards a maiden EABL title. Their opening opponent is North outfit The Sheffield College, who went 6-6 this year.

Defending champions Barking Abbey will be looking to extend their lead at the top of the EABL title table, their five wins to date are the most of any programme since the league began in 2010/11. BA host North #3 seeds Derby Trailblazers, with the winner taking on Charnwood or JMA.

Finally, Myerscough College will be going all out to avoid their "bridesmaid" tag for the third year in a row. Beaten finalists in both 2021/22 and 2022/23, 'Sco open the playoffs with a home tie against The Canterbury Academy, who were close to sealing the South title until the last few weeks of the regular season and will be a dangerous opponent despite their #3 seeding.

That game will be played at 3pm this afternoon before Myerscough head out to the EYBL Superfinal in Slovakia.


After last Wednesday's Play In games, the WEABL playoff field is also now set. After JMA's triumph over The Sheffield College, they'll take the spot as the #4 seeds from the North, making for five Southern teams and three Northern teams in this year's post-season.

#1 seeds in the North Charnwood College Riders went a perfect 9-0 in the regular season and will be hoping to carry that momentum forward to snag a first WEABL title since 2018/19. The Riders open the playoffs with a home game against last year's finalists Itchen College, who are this year's #4 seeds in the South.

South champs Copleston High School were also spotless in the regular season and their 10-0 record showed their dominance this year. The Suffolk programme welcome JMA Reading Rockets this Wednesday to kick things off, a team they've beaten 196-67 across their two regular season encounters.

Defending champs City of London Academy - Southwark are also at home as the South's #2 seeds. They've won a record four WEABL titles in their history and will look to make it five this year, starting their playoff run against a team they beat in the 2021/22 final, Nottingham Academy Wildcats.

The bottom of the draw sees North runners up Manchester Mystics against Oaklands Wolves, with the North West programme hoping that home court advantage will help them punch a ticket to their first-ever Final Fours appearance.


Tier 2 of the CBL are also heading towards Manchester, with eight teams looking to take home this year's title.

St Aloysius are the only unbeaten side in this year's playoffs as they ran away with Group C at 12-0. Their reward is a home tie against Xaverian College, who came third in Group A at 7-5.

Defending champions Shenley Brook End will get their playoffs underway with a home draw against co-champions from 2019/20 New City College Hackney.

Holy Trinity Storm won Group B at 10-1 as the other group winner. They'll welcome Group C runners Up Northolt High School in what should be an exciting contest.

Finally, Carmel College are the only side hosting a playoff game in the Elite Eights that didn't win their group. They did tie Shenley Brook at 11-1 before dipping out on a tiebreaker, they'll entertain The Crest Academy, who went 9-2 for second spot in Group B.