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News 13th Apr 2023

Freeths advises rising UK basketball star on multi-year international deal

National law firm Freeths has advised City of Birmingham Rockets’ and England Under-14 Ziah Francis on his multi-year deal with Serie A side Aquila Basket Trento, becoming the second UK youth ever to sign with the Italian team.

Transferring to Trento in August, this move follows record seasons for the 6’6″ 13-year-old having played for the Under-14 and Under-16 national league with Rockets. In December, Ziah also represented Olimpia Milano in the Memorial Zanatta Tournament which he won whilst in Italy on a variety of trials.

This deal is just the second of its kind from the UK with the Italian team, after Quinn Ellis signed a four-year contract last year.

The Freeths legal team was led by senior associate and sports law specialist Angelique Richardson, supported by trainee Fraser Kane.

Commenting on the deal, Angelique Richardson said: “I’m thrilled to have advised Ziah on this incredible deal with Trento. With such an inspiring talent at the age of 13, I look forward to watching his career flourish.”

Ziah’s father Lee Francis continued: “I’m so glad we decided to work with Freeths on Ziah’s contract. With this being a long-term contract and coming at such a pivotal time in Ziah’s career, it was vital that we get it right. I believe I have a great eye for detail, but Angelique was able to identify and explain certain words, phrases and clauses that I missed, which required clarification. She was also able to shed some light on parts we didn’t understand. Her support was amazing and gave us the confidence we needed to go ahead.”

Ziah Francis added: “I really appreciate the support we got from Angelique and Freeths. Having a professional to explain the contract and talk me through each section allowed me to understand exactly what I was signing. That gave me the confidence I needed to just focus on my game, and it was a relief to know that all the details were correct and things are in place to allow me to be successful.”

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