Club news

Official Club Announcement

17 June, 2015 11.04

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As many of our supporters will be aware the UK Border Agency sought to re-clarify the eligibility status of overseas players competing in the British Basketball League at the end of the 2014-15 season. After further discussions with the Border Agency, the British Basketball League and Basketball England, it has become evident that overseas students residing in the UK on a Student (Tier 4) visa are not permitted to compete in the BBL.

As a club, our playing structure has been built around recruiting athletes who also study at Durham University and this model has served us well in both the Basketball England National Leagues and, more recently, in the British Basketball League.

Unfortunately the recent clarifications from the Border Agency have resulted in this model no longer providing us with the base from which to recruit a competitive team and, with that in mind, it was felt that it was in the interests of both the club and the BBL for the Durham Wildcats to withdraw from the league for the 2015/16 season.

We are committed to using the next six months to build a structure that will enable us to successfully re-gain entry into the league. Inevitably there will need to be a far greater commercial focus to our model and we would welcome any expressions of support from interested parties.

There will be a series of club information evenings hosted at Newton Aycliffe throughout the summer months which will enable us to keep you all up to date with progress. Information will be posted on our website and on Facebook.

The club would like to take this opportunity to thank every single fan for their support of the club over the last few years. We remain committed to developing a competitive and sustainable model and, whilst this is quite clearly a huge setback for everyone involved, we are determined to ensure that the club re-emerges as a competitive force. The club also remains committed to delivering and striving to expand our junior programme in conjunction with Durham County Council and our other key partners – this will always be at the heart of the club.

We’ve had many memorable and thrilling days at Newton Aycliffe Leisure Centre – please be assured that we still believe that there will be many more to come.

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