The City of Edinburgh Basketball Club is one the most successful clubs in Scotland. Click here to see the honours received by the club.
|Secretary - Trevor Lodge|
p: 0131 657 9622
|Treasurer - Paul McBrierty|
|Membership Secretary - Stewart Gillies|
|Match Secretary - Brian Findlay|
|Fundraising Secretary - David Forfarr|
|Website - David Sarnowski|
The City of Edinburgh Basketball Club calls the comfortable conines of Portobello High School home. This is where we play all of our home fixtures and host all of our training sessions.
The City of Edinburgh BC was founded in 1988 when the successful junior teams of Portobello and Wester Hailes combined to enter the senior men’s national league. Portobello BC had evolved from the Portobello Old Parish Church Youth Club (POPYC) of the 1960’s and 1970’s which had entered national league competition as Craigroyston POPYC, playing out of Craigroyston Community Centre, and GTAuto-Electrics, with brother and sister Bill and Liz Dudgeon, now Mrs Simpson, two of its founder members and Liz, a former secretary, is still very much involved, particularly in coaching.
Former Scottish shot putt champion Sandy Sutherland moved to Portobello in 1972 and took up basketball as a recreational outlet which soon became an obsession as he took over the secretaryship of the new Portobello club based at Portobello High School gym. The arrival of Toni Szifris, whose father Boris virtually founded the sport in the East of Scotland, as head of PE at Portobello High School was a catalyst for the renaissance of the club which went from strength to strength thanks to a committed youth-development policy in place long before the national plans took shape.
Cup and league honours followed in profusion. But although the new City of Edinburgh men’s side reached the Scottish Cup Final in its second season, only to lose to MIM Livingston, senior men’s honours proved elusive in the first decade and, like King Robert the Bruce and the spider, it took the Kings seventh attempts before they finally captured the Scottish Cup in dramatic fashion in 2002, defeating Troon Tornadoes on the buzzer by one point a hotly disputed free throw converted by point guard Laurie Costello. Laurie, whose father Danny has coached the men to all their major honours, is one of a number of fine young players who have come through the junior ranks of the club and he not only represented GB at a Youth Olympics but played for Scotland in a European Promotion Cup while still a teenager.
Sister club Kool Kats had struck much earlier, winning the Scottish Cup in dramatic style in 1991, thanks to a three-pointer on the buzzer by Joanna Sutherland, daughter of the current club chief executive, and now a Promotions Officer with FIBA Europe based in Munich, where she still plays. Joanna is one of many full internationals produced by the club. They also included Kara Szifris, Toni’s daughter who became starting point guard for the national side.
In 1995 a formal marriage between the two clubs was unanimously approved and the City of Edinburgh BC, a club for all ages and both genders was fully established. In addition to the national league teams, competition and coaching is also offered at Portobello HS for mini and under-15 level. Last season’s secretary Trevor Lodge is now the club chairman and his son Garreth is the latest international success, returning from an excellent tour to the United States with the Scottish junior men; while coach Brian Findlay’s daughter Emma was in splendid form for the Scottish junior women on their US tour. With Laurie Costello unavailable for his third Promotions Cup due to exams, Kevin Anderson and Dan Wardrope became the latest Kings players to represent Scotland in Europe helping the national senior side to the bronze medals in Andorra in June.