London Lions are into the BBL Cup final after Manchester Giants forfeited their semi.

In a statement posted on the league’s website on Sunday, it was revealed that a number of Giants players are having to self-isolate following a positive Covid-test, despite playing on Friday evening against Cheshire.

It leaves Lions, their scheduled opponents, with an automatic bye into January 24’s final.

Giants owner Jamie Edwards said: “Although it is a heart wrenching decision to have to take, it’s the right thing to do to keep everyone safe and follow the protocols set out by government and the rules in the BBL’s secure play policy.

“My thoughts are with Danny (Byrne) and the players as they deserved this shot at reaching the final and I know they were confident that they could do it. This is a special group of players and I believe they will go on to do great things.”

Both semis of the Cup had been scheduled for Manchester’s Belle Vue.

However the other last four tie between Leicester Riders and Newcastle Eagles will now be held at the Morningside Arena on Tuesday at 5pm and shown live on BBL Player.

The venue, a statement said, was decided “via a remote random draw by the League central office with representatives from Leicester and Newcastle present to witness the draw.”

Cheshire’s planned Sunday game with Sheffield was previously called off.

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