Maurice Watkins has been appointed as the new Chair of the British Basketball Federation (BBF).
Watkins comes into take over a sport that is in turmoil, following the recent takeover of the BBF by the Home Country Associations that led to interim Chair Ed Warner and his six fellow Independent Directors resigning.
Watkin was a director of Manchester University basketball Club in the 1980’s and early 90’s, and was one of the principal architects of the formation of the original English Basketball League.
“Basketball is the fastest growing sport in the UK and we have a great deal of potential to change lives and communities and develop professional players who can perform at the highest level,” Watkins commented.
“To achieve this, we will work together. I’ve been encouraged by the unified voice of British Basketball and the Home Country Associations.” Though it should be noted, British Basketball is now being ran by the Home Country Associations.
He adds the BBF role along with his position as Chair of British Swiming and the Rugby League European Federation, a Director of Lancashire County Cricket Club, and is Senior Partner Brabners LLP. He is also a member of the British Olympic Association’s National Olympic Committee.
“Recent events have been challenging for British Basketball, both in terms of governance and finance,” Watkins continued.
“Our first priority is to steady the ship, keep GB players on the floor and to begin to attract new sponsors. I look forward to taking on this challenge in partnership with the team of GB Basketball staff and volunteers who work tirelessly for our sport, and with the associations of England, Scotland and Wales.
“As we begin to shape the new BBF Board, we would like to extend our sincere thanks to Nicky Shaw and Stef Collins for the steadfast commitment and dedication they have shown to the sport throughout recent events, and for being prepared to put the good of British Basketball before all other concerns.
“We look forward to continuing to work closely with them as we develop our future plans.”
Watkins is also Chairman of Governors of the Manchester Grammar School and New Islington Free School and Chair of Manchester Foundation Trust Charity. He is also a Council member of Bradford University.
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