GB Basketball have not been successful in gaining funding from UK Sport through to 2016 for both the men’s and the women’s squads.
After last year successfully appealing the decision to be given no funding in the build up to the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, they received one year’s funding, with the remaining three years dependent on “strict performance criteria”.
The decision comes just a day after GB’s men were given a favourable qualification draw for EuroBasket 2015 where they will face Bosnia-Herzegovina and Iceland this August in order to reach Ukraine next summer.
A statement on GBBasketball.com this afternoon expressed the disappointment in the decision.
We understand that they have decided to ‘shore up’ the funding of sports they judge to have medal prospects in 2016. They have decided that they will only be investing to the bottom of band 6 of their funding criteria (which runs to 8 bands).
British Basketball is desperately disappointed for the players, coaches, staff and basketball community in this country. One of the factors in restoring funding last year was on the basis of our medal potential for Tokyo 2020 and we still believe all the indicators for our senior and age group teams show the strength of the programme is building towards that aim.
Further to that, British Basketball’s Performance Chairman Roger Moreland said: “There is a gap in the system and that system needs to change otherwise there is no hope to realise legitimate aspiration for those sports that are not already at the table.”
“The system is not like a tap. To work effectively, it cannot be turned on and off and still produce players and coaches to succeed in future Olympic Games or World Championships.”
“The basketball community at home and abroad will be aghast that this can happen again. It seems every barrier to progress for basketball originates in Britain; the very country that should be embracing the progress its basketball teams have achieved. ”
“UK Sport decided not to fund basketball in December 2012 and have done so again. As we asked then, we ask again – what price a legacy from 2012?”
“We are still on the road to Rio but we now have to qualify for EuroBasket 2015 with our hands tied behind our back.”
“We will need to take stock of the challenges this decision presents. Right now, the view of Lord Harris in his Select Committee report on team sports holds true.”
There has been a massive reaction on Twitter this afternoon – and the British basketball community is asking fans to use the hashtag “#nolegacy4bball” to show their disappoint at the decision.
Keep here with UKAmericanSportsFans.com today for more news and reaction to the decision.