Tom Maher courtside 568Outgoing British Basketball performance director Chris Spice has hinted that his bid to keep GB women’s coach Tom Maher in post was thwarted by the financial uncertainty surrounding the sport.

MVP revealed last week that the Australian had accepted a full-time, four-year, post with the Chinese national team who he previously helmed in the lead-up to the 2008 Olympic Games.

Damian Jennings is expected to be confirmed as his replacement inside the next month.

But with delays in UK Sport agreeing funding causing difficulties in setting long-term budgets for Great Britain’s teams, Spice says an offer of a one-year contract was not enough to retain Maher’s services.

“We are very sad to have lost the services of our Olympic women’s coach Tom Maher who has recently accepted the Head Coach role with China through to Rio 2016,” said Spice.

“Unfortunately we were not able to offer anything beyond a one-year contract and we fully understand his decision. We wish Tom every success for his next challenge and we want to thank him for his unwavering efforts over the past three years with the GB national women’s team.

“British Basketball hopes to be in a position to announce his successor in the coming weeks.”

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