St Albans’ Oaklands College opens new basketball centre

Team shout in Oaklands College's new sports hall

Team shout in Oaklands College's new sports hall - Credit: Photo supplied

PATIENCE has paid off for a coach in St Albans who recently celebrated the first basketball game in Oaklands College’s new state-of-the-art sports hall.

Oaklands Boys’ Basketball Academy played its first game of the season in the sports hall, winning against Hackney Community College 72-59 at the Smallford Campus, Hatfield Road.

Oaklands College coach Michael Ball said: “I have waited over 20 years to be able to train elite players in an elite environment.

“Now I can say that it has been well worth the wait and I hope that our students realise how much these facilities will help their development and continue to work hard every day to become the best they can be.”

It is hoped the new sports hall will help students become elite sports men and women.

Basketball Academy captain Ben Lawson, who has just returned from Belgium after being selected for the England U18 squad for the Altia Xmas Tournament, said: “It was a new dawn for us playing our first ever game in these fantastic new facilities. The basketball court, new strength and conditioning gym and video analysis room gives us probably the best facilities in the country.

“I thought we started strong and despite moments when we went away from the game plan it was great to see the team produce when it mattered and pull off our first ever win against Hackney.

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“I am proud that I was a part of the first ever team to play in the new sports hall and hopefully it was the first win of many to come.

“For my own personal development and aspiration to reach my goal of a basketball scholarship to the USA, this is exactly the right place to be.”