- National Teams
The secretary general of FIBA, Patrick Baumann has urged Great Britain not to pull funding on basketball after the London Olympics in 2012. Baumann, who is also one the International Olympic Committee’s inspectors overseeing preparations for the 2012 Games described it as “a scenario where we (FIBA) would have concerns.”
Talking to the Sporting Life, he went on to say
“The problem has been indicated in different sports. I would not like to see this because basketball does not deserve those sorts of ups and downs. We feel that now you have 2012 to help the sport in the UK it would be a waste of money if you were not to continue that support (after London 2012).
You can not expect a sport that is not in the minds of British people to suddenly win medals if you do not create a base for it to build. You will be able to get a new team for 2016 and if you modify the funding stream that can hurt the legacy from 2012. I think that basketball will show the country that it can perform in 2012 and it deserves the investment. It is important that the funding stays in place.
What we do not want is for the Olympic Games to finish on Sunday and for on Monday there to be a great split for basketball and for Britain not to be able to play strongly on a European basis. Britain should be looking at hosting a European Championships, at the least. For Britain to be able to host netball championships and not basketball – that would be just silly.”
Baumann continued to talk about what needs to be done before British basketball can challenge at international tournaments.
“What is lacking is the level after that (school and grassroots) and the structure that seniors need to get to be a national team like football teams have. There is not the mechanism that brings those kids to the clubs and raises them in to the national squad. I think what is crucial here is that Britain has the core elements for it, which is the passion at the right age level.”
You can read the full interview with the FIBA secretary general here.
Image Credit: The Sporting Life