- National Teams
The British Basketball Federation (BBF) have opted not to enter the GB Senior Men into the Pre-Olympic Qualifying tournaments in August to instead focus on EuroBasket 2025 qualifying, Hoopsfix can exclusively real.
The decision – which was hinted at on the Hoopsfix podcast with new BBF Chair Chris Grant – comes as the BBF looks to rebound after an abysmal summer in 2022, culminating in the men’s disastrous EuroBasket campaign.
Grant told Hoopsfix they believe that “preparation of the team (for the next cycle) will be better served during the Summer by a combination of camps and practice games than by participation in the Pre-Olympic Qualifiers.”
GB have only appeared at two Olympic games; the 1948 and 2012 editions in London, qualifying by nature of being the host country. The odds would have been against them to qualify for 2024, needing to be one of five to advance from the Pre-Olympic Qualifiers and join the 24 teams in the four Olympic Qualifying Tournaments and win their group to secure one of the 12 Olympic spots.
Either way, that slim chance is now at zero without entering the qualifiers, and the Olympic drought will for sure continue until at least 2028 for the men.
It is understood the team will instead hold a training camp and potentially host some type of tournament to play friendly games during the same time period this summer.
“We are committed to putting in place a programme of the highest quality for all our GB Teams to be able to reach their full potential,” Grant told Hoopsfix in a statement via the BBF when comment was requested.
“That means learning from the past; building a genuinely collaborative culture across the Home Countries and basketball stakeholders, and focusing our resources where they’ll make the biggest positive impact.
“At this stage, our focus for the Senior Men’s programme is to ensure that their activities over the coming months equip our exciting mix of seasoned campaigners and emerging talent to start their EuroBasket 2025 qualifying campaign in November on the best possible footing.
“Gaining input from current and recently retired players is a big priority, and we’re working tirelessly behind the scenes to ensure that the “team behind the team” have robust plans in place and the resources to deliver them as we enter a new cycle in November. We have already established that the preparation of the team will be better served during the Summer by a combination of camps and practice games than by participation in the Pre-Olympic Qualifiers.”
The women will compete in EuroBasket this summer, needing a top 5 finish to remain in 2024 Olympic contention.
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