2019/20 ABL Playoffs set to get underway

Haringey Sixth Form College fans celebrate their team's success in last year's Final

After a tense and exciting regular season across the ABL’s four conferences, the 2019/20 playoffs are set to begin this week with eight intriguing post season match ups.

Opening with the Sweet Sixteen stage of the playoffs, Southern Conference winners HTS Storm finished their campaign with a perfect 18-0 record and the #1 seed, they’ll entertain #16 seed County Upper (8-8).

Eastern Conference top dogs New City College claimed the #2 slot with a 15-1 record, they’ll face #15 Oasis Academy (10-6) whilst #3 seed St Charles College (15-1) go up against #14 Carmel College (10-5) after winning the Western Conference.

That leaves the 4th and final Conference winner from the North, Queen Ethelburga’s (13-3), to battle it out against the #13 seed Northfleet Tech (12-6) from the Southern Conference.

Defending ABL champions Haringey Sixth Form College (14-1) finished 2nd in the Eastern Conference and secure the #5 seed, opening their playoffs with a home tie against #12 Capital City Academy (10-5). That means a repeat of last season’s ABL Final could still be on the cards, with Haringey unable to meet St Charles College until the final.

Fans looking for a potential upset or two should no doubt keep a firm eye on teams like #10 seed Nottingham Academy (12-4), #11 John Roan School (13-5) and #7 The North School (15-3) who all enjoyed solid regular season campaigns in tough divisions.

All fixtures from the Sweet Sixteen stage will take place on either Wednesday 12 or 19 February before the winning teams progress to the Elite Eight stage on 26 February.

Final Four contests will take place on the 4 March and following a week off, the Academy Finals for the ABL, EABL and WEABL will take place at University of Essex Sport Arena on Wednesday 18 March.