Loughborough Lightning Wheelchair Basketball crowned champions
Loughborough Lightning Wheelchair Basketball has made history by winning the inaugural Women’s Premier League title.
George Bates’s side recorded an impressive 73-64 victory over East London Phoenix in the play-off final on Sunday to end an incredible season unbeaten.
Following nine victories in the regular season, Lightning continued their fine form into the play-off weekend, beating Worcester Wolves 82-42 in empathic style to set up the winner takes all tie with Phoenix.
In front of a packed crowd, Lightning duly delivered to cap off a remarkable campaign.
In what proved to be a tense final, Loughborough showed great resilience to hold their nerve, securing the winners’ trophy amid jubilant scenes.
“I’m immensely proud of this team after an unbelievable season,” Bates told Loughborough Sport.
“The girls have sacrificed so much for the programme this year. Their drive, ambition, and ability to get results has been nothing short of outstanding. To go through the whole season unbeaten is an incredible feat and we’ll certainly enjoy the celebrations.
“Each and every squad member, including the backroom team, should take great pride in what we’ve achieved. We’re already looking forward to defending our title next season.”
Head Coach George Bates led Lightning to an unbeaten season. Image provided by Ben Lumley Photography.
Loughborough Lightning were formed in April 2021 as British Wheelchair Basketball launched the Women’s Premier League – the very first professional para-sport league in the UK.
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Notes for editors
Press release reference number: 22/90
Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.
It has been awarded five stars in the independent QS Stars university rating scheme, named the best university in the world for sports-related subjects in the 2022 QS World University Rankings and University of the Year for Sport by The Times and Sunday Times University Guide 2022.
Loughborough is in the top 10 of every national league table, being ranked 7th in The UK Complete University Guide 2022, and 10th in both the Guardian University League Table 2022 and the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2022.
Loughborough is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in the Times Higher Education’s ‘table of tables’ and is in the top 10 in England for research intensity. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, Loughborough has been awarded seven Queen’s Anniversary Prizes.
The Loughborough University London campus is based on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and offers postgraduate and executive-level education, as well as research and enterprise opportunities.
It is home to influential thought leaders, pioneering researchers and creative innovators who provide students with the highest quality of teaching and the very latest in modern thinking.