Basketball: Edinburgh Uni teams in bid for history

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Edinburgh University bid to create Scottish basketball history when both men’s and women’s teams contest the Scottish Cup semi-finals at the Crags Sports Centre on Sunday.

Though EU men, being founder members of the Scottish Association, won the trophy four times in the early years, the first in 1949, and appeared in seven finals, EU women are only recent additions, winning their first trophy in their first national season earlier this year.

So for both to reach the finals would be a remarkable achievement for the student clubs who have been struggling this week to find somewhere to train as there have been exams going on at their normal home court at the Pleasance CSE.

Men’s league challengers Glasgow Uni, who have had just one defeat, have had similar problems. “Our prep’s been far from ideal having lost the services of Ferran Valle, one of the best players in the league, and the two players likely to come in for him, Chris de Sousa and Stamatis Spyriounis have both picked up injuries and are unlikely to play,” says GU coach Josh Tackie.

“Many of the team have extra exam and essay burdens which have hit our prep and teething problems at our new Games Hall have severely limited our court time.”

Edinburgh men, who had a scrimmage against their recent league conquerors Boroughmuir Blaze at the Crags this week, face GU at 4.20pm on Sunday after the women’s semi at 11.20am when EU defend their season’s unbeaten Scottish record against Edinburgh Kool Kats, the former champions.

There could even be an all-student women’s final as St Mirren face St Andrews University in the other women’s semi at the Lagoon SC, Paisley tonight (8.15pm).