Published

22 November 2021

 

Freya Levy has become the latest player to sign for the East London Phoenix ahead of the inaugural British Wheelchair Basketball Women’s Premier League.

A wheelchair basketball athlete for 10 years now, Freya has also been part of the Great Britain Pathway since 2012 and was a member of the U25 team that won the team's first European Gold medal.

The 25-year-old is a 1.0 classification player and is looking forward to playing for the University of East London (UEL) franchise and inspiring a new audience for the sport.

She said, "It is an incredible opportunity to showcase our sport and the facilities on offer at the university. I'm excited to be able to inspire the next generation and for the young females with disabilities who may think that sport isn’t for them – it absolutely is."

A multi-talented athlete, Freya was a county-level football and rugby union player before being diagnosed with muscular dystrophy.

Since then, she has competed at international level in wheelchair basketball, para ice hockey and wheelchair rugby league.

The East London Phoenix launches as one of four franchises in Britain’s first-ever professional women's wheelchair basketball league.

The opportunity comes in partnership with UEL, an institute that prides itself partly on sport and creating opportunities in east London. It is hoped that the Phoenix will have the same effect on wheelchair basketball.

High Performance Manager Will Ashby said, "I think having access to the great facilities here at UEL will help bring in local communities such as schools who can experience the sport for the first time."

The High Performance Programme at UEL provides scholarships for talented athletes to help elevate their sporting careers.

There are currently a number of High Performance sports, to which wheelchair basketball will be added, so that players will have access to benefits such as elite gym facilities and strength and conditioning expertise.

Director of Sport James Kilden said, "There are already some great established wheelchair basketball clubs here and we just want to add that extra layer of performance and give that opportunity to inspire the next generation of coaches as well as players."

The Phoenix start their season in January 2022.

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