GB ‘NO’ COULD BRING EUROBASKET BLOW

There could be no route into the men’s or women’s EuroBasket in 2013 for the home nations if a single British Basketball federation is not given the green light ahead of next year’s Olympics, MVP has learnt.

Participating European teams at London 2012 – as well as its qualifying tournament – will receive automatic berths at the following summer’s continental championship under long-standing procedures.

However some within the sport have questioned the right of a British country, most likely England, to inherit that spot if the current united Great Britain programme is discontinued post-Olympics.

A decision on that issue must be taken by next June after a ruling from FIBA at its central board meeting earlier this year. And one respected observer told MVP that a No result would potentially cause a major headache for all parties.

“If there is no GB, then there is no place at EuroBasket,” claimed one long-time observer with experience of working for FIBA.

“The problem then would arise that you would have England, Scotland and Wales with no way to qualify for 2013. And they would not have any competitive games for two years.”

FIBA Europe officials have confirmed that no firm position has been taken on what might occur under such a scenario. The matter, a spokesperson said, would be passed to its Competitions Commission in the event of GB opting out.

“They have options according to what FIBA has laid down for them,” said FIBA Europe president Olaf Rafnsson.

“I think it’s premature to speculate on which choice they will make.”

Britain’s men will take part in this year’s EuroBasket in Lithuania next month.

Pic: Map photos

 

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